On Monday night, at least 52 people were killed in a wave of air attacks by the Israeli army on the city of Rafah, located in the south of the Gaza Strip near the border with Egypt. This was reported by the AFP and AP agencies with reference to the Ministry of Health of this autonomous territory controlled by the militant Hamas movement. The Israeli armed forces, in cooperation with the Shin Bet secret service and the police, managed to free two hostages in the city of Rafah, located in the south of the Gaza Strip.
A Palestinian salvages items after an Israeli attack in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah on February 10, 2024.
The Palestinian WAFA agency, citing medical sources in Rafah, reported even more than 100 dead and hundreds of wounded. There were supposed to be about 40 Israeli airstrikes. According to the ministry, the airstrikes hit 14 houses and three mosques in different parts of Rafah.
An AP journalist based in Rafah said that the vicinity of the Kuwaiti hospital was also hit.
According to the AP, the Israeli army confirmed that it attacked “terrorist targets in the area of Shabour”, one of the neighborhoods of Rafah.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday ordered the army to prepare a plan to evacuate civilians ahead of an expected ground invasion of Rafah. The city, which had a population of around 300,000 before the war between Israel and Hamas, is now home to an estimated 1.4 million people. Most of them fled there from fighting in other parts of the Gaza Strip.
US President Joe Biden called on Netanyahu on Sunday for the Jewish state not to launch a military operation against Hamas in Rafah until a “credible and enforceable” plan is in place to protect civilians.
They freed the two hostages
The Israeli armed forces, in cooperation with the Shin Bet secret service and the police, managed to free two hostages taken by Palestinian militants from Hamas during their incursion into Israel on October 7 in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, the Times of Israel reported.
The men, in their 60s and 70s, were abducted from Kibbutz Nir Yitzchak, located on the northwest edge of the Negev desert. Both rescued hostages are in good condition and were taken to Sheba Hospital in Ramat Gan for examination. It is the largest hospital in Israel and in the Middle East.
Israeli Defense Minister Joav Gallant, who watched the rescue operation from the operating room, described it as “impressive”.
The Times of Israel recalled that it was only the second successful operation of its kind since the beginning of the war in the Gaza Strip.
The commandos of Hamas and other extremist groups killed more than 1100 people and kidnapped another 250 during the attack on Israel. The Israeli army subsequently launched airstrikes and a ground offensive against Hamas and its allies in the Gaza Strip. According to the Israeli government, 136 people are still in the hands of Hamas, but at least 30 are dead. The military reiterated on Monday that it would continue to make every effort to bring these hostages home.