Egypt warns against Israeli ground attack in Rafah, calls for Gaza ceasefire

Egypt warned Sunday against an Israeli ground attack on Rafah city in the southern Gaza Strip and called for a cease-fire in the besieged enclave, Anadolu reports.

A Foreign Ministry statement said that an attack on Rafah, where 1.4 million people have taken refuge from the ongoing Israeli war, would have grave humanitarian consequences.

“It will harm Palestinian civilians who took refuge in Rafah as the last safe haven inside Gaza,” the statement said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday approved military plans for a ground operation in Rafah.

“Any operation (in Rafah), despite international rejection, reflects indifference to the lives of innocent civilians, and is a grave violation of international law and international humanitarian law,” the ministry said.

Egypt also called on Israel to stop its policies “of collective punishment against the residents of the Gaza Strip, including siege, starvation, indiscriminate targeting of civilians, and the destruction of infrastructure.”

It demanded international stakeholders and the UN Security Council to shoulder their responsibilities by calling for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza.

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since a Hamas attack on Oct. 7, 2023, which killed nearly 1,200 people.

More than 31,600 Palestinians, mostly women and children, have since been killed in Gaza, and nearly 73,700 others injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of most food, clean water, and medicine, while 60% of the enclave’s infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

(Source: MEMO)