Israel PM orders army to prepare to evacuate civilians from Gaza’s Rafah
AFP | Palestinian Territories
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered the army to prepare to “evacuate” hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from Gaza’s Rafah, his office said Friday, after Washington warned it would not support any ground assault on the city.
The show of defiance against Israel’s main ally came after President Joe Biden issued his strongest criticism yet of Netanyahu’s conduct of the war, warning the response to Hamas’s October 7 attack had been “over the top”.
Netanyahu told military and security officials to “submit to the cabinet a combined plan for evacuating the population and destroying the battalions” of Palestinian militant group Hamas holed up in Rafah, a statement from his office said.
The city is the last main population centre in the Gaza Strip that Israeli troops have yet to enter but is also the main point of entry for desperately needed relief supplies.
And in a sign of his growing frustration with Israel’s leadership, Biden said its military retaliation for the October 7 attack had gone too far.
“I’m of the view, as you know, that the conduct of the response in Gaza, in the Gaza Strip, has been over the top,” the US president said.