Thousands flee Gaza amid heavy Israeli strikes

Gaza City, July 9 : Reports indicate that Israeli forces have launched one of the most severe assaults on Gaza City since October 7, prompting thousands of Palestinians to flee from an already devastated region. The latest offensive targeted the eastern sector of Gaza City, with Israel’s far-right coalition threatening to halt ongoing ceasefire negotiations in Qatar.

The Israeli military issued evacuation orders for the targeted zone, but the intensity of the strikes has prevented civil emergency services from reaching affected areas. Local sources report numerous casualties, with residential areas bombed and significant civilian displacement. Sayeda Abdel-Baki, now in her fifth displacement, described fleeing in darkness amid heavy strikes.

Medics at al-Ahli Arab Baptist hospital evacuated patients to the overcrowded Indonesian hospital in northern Gaza. The Israeli military stated that the operation targeted Hamas and Islamic Jihad infrastructure within UNRWA headquarters. Philippe Lazzarini, UNRWA’s commissioner general, has criticized both Hamas and Israel for using its facilities during the conflict.

The offensive complicates ceasefire negotiations, with internal Israeli politics divided. Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich opposes halting the war, insisting on a complete military victory over Hamas. Netanyahu faces pressure from opposition parties, media, and families of Israeli hostages, with opposition leader Yair Lapid criticizing Netanyahu’s recent statements as jeopardizing hostage negotiations for political gain.

As the conflict continues, the humanitarian toll rises, with thousands of civilians displaced and caught in the crossfire.