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The war against Hamas: Israel orders the immediate evacuation of one million people from the Gaza Strip

“Everything now is imminent. Israel is bombarding people in northern Gaza with leaflets ordering a total evacuation, let them escape to the south right now, the flyers also fall from this side, they are given 24 hours to flee,” he tells Clarion a neighbor of Sderot, a city near the Strip and which is a frequent target of Hamas rockets.

It is one of the most important sites that suffered the weekend coup with the assault of the terrorist group. This warning is the prior movement to a total offensive on the north of the territory that is strategically the most important in the Israeli military target.

“The intention is to get them to Egypt, so that the passage is opened and the civilians can leave in time, they are going to erase all that tomorrow,” says another of the city’s inhabitants in a conversation with the envoy of Clarion. It is assumed here that it is imminent as well a possible ground attack on the region.

A statement from the Israeli Army this Friday called for “the evacuation of all civilians from Gaza City from their homes to the south for their own safety and protection, and move to the area south of (the Wadi Gaza ravine). The UN immediately urged that this measure be annulled because it considers it impossible to carry out.

“The United Nations strongly calls for any such order, if confirmed, to be rescinded, preventing what could transform what is already a tragedy in a calamitous situation”said Stéphane Dujarric, spokesman for the UN Secretary General.

Police cover a journalist during the alert for a rocket attack from Gaza in Sderot. Photo: AFP

There live more than a million of the 2.2 million inhabitants of that region, poorly governed by the fundamentalist Hamas that is currently target of a hail of Israeli bombings in reaction to the brutal assault by militias last weekend.

“I sent my daughter and my grandchildren to Buenos Aires”

“I sent my daughter and my grandchildren to Buenos Aires, but I am staying here,” says the neighbor, a brave retiree from the public administration in the municipalities near Gaza. We are omitting identification due to the discomfort that witnesses indicate in naming them. There is a fear that is logically irrational throughout this territory.

A few hours ago five shells fell in Sderot. Sirens sound frequently accompanied by a voice that orders march to the miclats, the bomb-proof shelters and shots that must exist in every house and buildings. Not everyone obeys that order and tragedies occur.

“There is a dead girl and the young man who accompanied her is very badly injured…” says the woman. “They were in a car. When you are in a car you have to stop and get on the ground but from the opposite side the rocket comes. You have to learn to detect it. Lie on the ground and cover your head because of the shrapnel that rockets bring They jump like rain up to a meter around one. “These kids did wrong and the shears fell on their bodies.” The dead girl was a military officer.

The rockets are unguided and in many cases are loaded with screws, ground glass, nails or anything that becomes a projectile when exploding.

  Palestinians walk through the rubble after an attack on the Al-Ramal area, following an Israeli attack on Gaza City.  Photo: EFE Palestinians walk through the rubble after an attack on the Al-Ramal area, following an Israeli attack on Gaza City. Photo: EFE

The woman speaks with a determined tone, without showing fear, accustomed to the tension that has always existed in the Gaza neighborhood.

This Saturday it was already difficult to enter Sderot. From the route it is clearly possible to see the city, which is not hidden at all. There are strong versions that the site will be completely evacuated in the next few hours due to the offensive in preparation, which allows its size to be gauged.

Also due to the risk of militias still active in the region. “Until yesterday they were finding terrorists, they are hiding with some food to survive. “The military and police sweep the area and find and arrest them.”

“Hamas takes advantage of the horror”

In that region they are convinced that the evacuation of the Gazans will be complicated. “The civilians there are more afraid of Hamas than of us,” adds the other testimony. “They make people stay to be shields and appear on television after the attacks, the dead, the children, They take advantage of the horror. “We all know that they hide weapons in hospitals and schools,” he says.

There is a strong thirst for revenge in Israel and especially in the region that puts pressure on Benjamin Netanyahu’s government for terminal action. For this reason, the demand of the United Nations to stop the evacuation will surely be ignored. Yesterday they buried 200 soldiers, these witnesses say. “People are angry and if the military doesn’t come in, they will come in”they claim.

That fury is channeled in an anarchic way by a group of ultra-Orthodox Jews called the family. “They are fanatics, they attacked a hospital where one of the Hamas attackers was being treated. They went looking for him, they took him out of the hospital, they beat the doctors and nurses. “They wanted to execute him.” They could not. Israel was retaining him because he would be an individual of rank and with information, they explain. There are many militiamen detained since the attack.

-Are you afraid? Clarín Question

– They have to have it.

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