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Grave concerns raised over Israel’s plans for ground invasion of Rafah

12 Feb 2024 4 minute read
Handout photo issued by Humanity First UK of the situation on the ground in Rafah City

Plaid Cymru Westminster leader, Liz Saville Roberts MP, has raised grave concerns over a planned Israeli ground invasion of Rafah in the south of Gaza, and renewed her party’s calls for a ceasefire.

The town was hit by airstrikes overnight, with Israel signalling its intention to carry out a ground offensive in the area.

The town, on the border with Egypt, is one of the few regions not yet targeted by an Israeli ground offensive and is providing refuge to more than half of Gaza’s 2.3 million population who have fled fighting elsewhere.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said sending troops into Rafah is necessary to eliminate Hamas.

He announced on Friday that he had asked the military to prepare to enter Rafah and evacuate hundreds of thousands of people.

Unimaginable

Ms Saville Roberts said that the prospect of a ground invasion would be “unimaginable” and “must be resisted in the strongest terms.”

She added: “Many of those now sheltering in Rafah are doing so having been forced to flee their homes elsewhere. It is unimaginable that they now face an imminent military incursion; it must be resisted in the strongest terms.

“With more than 28,100 now dead since the start of this conflict, the international community can no longer afford to sit on its hands while this tragedy unfolds.

“I urge the UK Government to play its part in ensuring an immediate ceasefire. The international community must come together to enable the safe release of the hostages and put an end to the collective punishment of the Palestinian people.”

Concerned

Foreign Secretary Lord David Cameron said: “We are very concerned about what is happening in Rafah because, let’s be clear, the people there, many of whom have moved four, five, six times before getting there.

“It really, we think, is impossible to see how you can fight a war amongst these people, there is nowhere for them to go.

“They can’t go south into Egypt, they can’t go north and back to their homes because many have been destroyed.

“So we are very concerned about the situation and we want Israel to stop and think seriously before it takes any further action.

“But above all, what we want is an immediate pause in the fighting. We want that pause to lead to a ceasefire, a sustainable ceasefire without a return to further fighting. That is what should happen now.

“We need to get those hostages out, including the British nationals. We need to get the aid in. The best way to do that is to stop the fighting now and turn that into a permanent, sustainable ceasefire.”

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “We are obviously deeply concerned about the prospect of a military offensive in Rafah.

“Over half of Gaza’s population are sheltering there and that crossing is vital to ensuring aid can reach the people who desperately need it.”

Ceasefire

21 different agencies and organisations have written to the Prime Minister urging him to call for an immediate ceasefire and an end to the offensive in Rafah, as well as the suspension of all arms export licences for sales Israel.

The list of signees includes ActionAid UK, Cafod, Christian Aid and Lawyers for Palestinian Human Rights.

“We, as agencies united, attempted to work together with the Government towards leveraging what the UK can do to halt these atrocities. We are losing confidence in ministers as the UK appears utterly incapable of restraining Israel in its current attempts,” the letter says.


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Rhufawn Jones
Rhufawn Jones
5 months ago

Want to eliminate Hamas – then stop occupying Palestinian lands. Boycott Israel. Apartheid state.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

Pity all we have is Dave, Rishi and Alias Alias MP, who lets face it don’t give a monkey’s cuss about anything but themselves…

Criminals in Power are using the military to keep out of court. They are costing billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of innocent lives around the globe…

Gareth Westacott
Gareth Westacott
5 months ago

Simple answer – why doesn’t Egypt open the border and give refuge to their muslim brethren until such time as Israeli forces have wiped out Hamas. Then they can go back.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

That is a recent topic of conversation here, exactly what my other half said. I replied that the military own Egypt just about and strategic thinking as they see it must say no…

It is truly, to paraphrase Francis Fukuyama, the beginning of the end of man’s history. (If ever a book tempted providence.) You can’t fight climate change and have a world war at the same time…

How long until there is a nuclear event. Dirty bomb, battlefield nukes or another Chernobyl…

Fi yn unig
Fi yn unig
5 months ago

Egypt doesn’t need to open the border given that the aim is to crash through it to displace all Palestinians into the Sinai desert then close that border so that no Palestinian will be able pass through it to return home. Egypt through no fault of its’ own, will then have been directly involved in what is already an international incident being further exacerbated by the actions of its’ neighbour.

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
5 months ago

We are watching an Israeli stuff movie. It’s absolutely disgusting. There seems to be no empathy or care by Western powers towards the Palestinian people. Well over 30,000 innocent men, women and children have been slaughtered, and all I hear is, ” Israel reserves the right to defend itself” , but where’s the Palestinians rights. They have none it seems. Why is the world allowing this genocide? I listen to the BBC, LBC, Sky News and other TV & radio stations and all I see and hear are British Jews talking about antisemitism, never stopping the killing in Gaza or… Read more »

Last edited 5 months ago by Y Cymro
Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago
Reply to  Y Cymro

‘Snuff’ as in putting a candle out Y Cymro…

They have none, they are not alone, the powerful nations have always kept a whipping boy throughout history. They give them new names, those who pick our tea leaves for topical instance…

Mandi A
Mandi A
5 months ago
Reply to  Y Cymro

“Pre 1948 Jews and Palestinians lived in peace” – not true, sorry. There are many cross-community projects including whole towns where Arabs and Jewish people live side by side but these go unreported. The two-state ‘solution’ is not a solution, it was a UN chimera. Only when all communities can come together to live peacably with viable governance for all can we even begin to dream of an end to the hatred. The West can not wish it away by shouting or taking sides. If Egypt would join a coalition of Arab / Muslim nations with Israel and some honest… Read more »

adopted cardi
adopted cardi
5 months ago
Reply to  Y Cymro

well said. No decent human being could support Israel. It is to support absolute Depravity.

Mandi A
Mandi A
5 months ago
Reply to  adopted cardi

UK and US bomb sites in the Yemeni capital to protect shipping lanes, Russia bombs Ukraine indiscriminately for land gain. It was OK to go into Iraq after Isis / Al Qaeda. Level playing fields needed here.

adopted cardi
adopted cardi
5 months ago
Reply to  Mandi A

i don’t support any war, murder or otherwise so you get your facts straight.

Gareth Westacott
Gareth Westacott
5 months ago
Reply to  adopted cardi

‘Depravity’? And what was it that Hamas did on October 7 if not depravity of the most savage and brutal kind.

adopted cardi
adopted cardi
4 months ago

Agreed but if what Hamas did was depravity then what in all the world and hereafter do we call what Israel is doing? 30,000 people murdered or dying after being buried alive. Using white phosphorous bombs, blowing up women and kids just for moving. Demolishing heritage sites, schoola, universities wholesale. Murdering and torturing doctors and medical staff, teachers – even bakeries where peole are queuing up in the devastion for bread. Pure evil If you defend that – then you need help I’d say.

Gareth Westacott
Gareth Westacott
5 months ago

Why can’t they ‘go south’ into Egypt?

David
David
5 months ago

I am glad to see that you believe that ALL peoples of countries that have been occupied by the UK and had their countries bombed by UK forces have the right to move into the UK without limitations.

Mandi A
Mandi A
5 months ago

Can we please stop accepting Hamas casualty figures as gospel? There will come a time for body counts but right now there are more urgent considerations.

Fi yn unig
Fi yn unig
5 months ago
Reply to  Mandi A

There are indeed more urgent considerations and those are making sure the known death toll of around 28,000 Palestinians does not rise further and when the time for body counts does come, will there be any Palestinians left in Gaza to tell us how many dead were found in the rubble? If the count is conducted by the aggressor, the official total will be nil. Not a figure to be believed either.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

Truth and Honesty consigned to the dustbin of history…

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