Israeli airstrikes kill 37 Palestinians seeking shelter in tents near Gaza’s Rafah | 10 updates

Israel has killed at least 37 Palestinians after shelling and airstrikes near Gaza's Rafah, sparking international condemnation. Spain, Norway, and Ireland recognize a Palestinian state.

Livemint
First Published29 May 2024
A man carries a child, as Palestinians travel on foot along with their belongings as they flee Rafah due to an Israeli military operation, in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, May 28, 2024. REUTERS/Hatem Khaled
A man carries a child, as Palestinians travel on foot along with their belongings as they flee Rafah due to an Israeli military operation, in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, May 28, 2024. REUTERS/Hatem Khaled (REUTERS)

Israeli shelling and airstrikes overnight and on Tuesday killed at least 37 Palestinians, the majority of whom were seeking shelter in tents outside the southern Gaza city of Rafah

Here are the top ten updates:

1. As reported by AP, the inferno at the tent camp has sparked widespread international condemnation, with even some of Israel’s closest allies expressing outrage over the military’s expanded offensive into Rafah. Furthermore, as a sign of Israel's increasing isolation on the global stage, Spain, Norway, and Ireland formally recognized a Palestinian state on Tuesday.

2. The Israeli military indicated that the fire at the tent camp on Sunday might have been triggered by secondary explosions, potentially stemming from weapons belonging to Palestinian militants.

Also Read: 'All eyes on Rafah': Israel pounds southern Gaza city amid global outrage and ICJ ruling — All you need to know

3. The airstrike or the ensuing fire could have also ignited fuel, cooking gas canisters, or other materials in the camp. According to Gaza health officials, 45 Palestinians were killed. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu characterized the incident as a “tragic mishap.”

4. Algeria has submitted a draft resolution to members of the UN Security Council, urging an end to Israel's offensive in Rafah and an “immediate ceasefire,” AFP reported. 

5. The Israeli military's attack on Rafah, initiated on May 6, led to over one million individuals fleeing the city, a UN agency aiding Palestinian refugees said on Tuesday.

6. Many of these individuals had already been displaced multiple times during the nearly eight-month Israel's war on Gaza. As a result, families are now scattered across makeshift tent camps and other areas heavily affected by the war.

Also Read: 'Despite our utmost efforts...': Netanyahu calls Israeli strike in Rafah a 'tragic mistake' that killed 45 people

7. Late Monday and early Tuesday, shelling targeted Rafah’s western Tel al-Sultan district, resulting in the deaths of at least 16 persons, Palestinian Civil Defense and the Palestinian Red Crescent reported. Among the casualties, seven were located in tents adjacent to a UN facility, approximately 200 meters from the site of Sunday's fire.

8. “It was a night of horror,” said Abdel-Rahman Abu Ismail, a Palestinian from Gaza City who has been sheltering in Tel al-Sultan since December. AP reported that he heard “constant sounds” of explosions overnight and into Tuesday, with fighter jets and drones flying above.

Also Read: Meet Indian Judge Dalveer Bhandari, who voted against Israel's Rafah offensive at ICJ

9. He said it reminded him of the Israeli invasion of his neighbourhood of Shijaiyah in Gaza City, where Israel launched a heavy bombing campaign before sending in ground forces in late 2023. “We saw this before,” he said.

10. Most of Gaza’s hospitals are no longer functioning. Rafah’s Kuwait Hospital shut down Monday after a strike near its entrance killed two health workers. On Tuesday afternoon, Gaza's Health Ministry said that an Israeli drone strike targeted tents near a field hospital by the Mediterranean coast west of Rafah, resulting in the deaths of at least 21 persons, including 13 women.

(With inputs from agencies)

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