Netanyahu Vows Defiance Against Allies Amid Israel-Gaza Conflict Over Rafah Invasion


 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has reiterated his resolve to launch an offensive in Rafah, despite facing international criticism.


Rafah, home to about 1.5 million Palestinians from other parts of Gaza seeking shelter, has become a focal point of Israel's military strategy.


Netanyahu's comments come amid opposition from German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who is currently on a Middle East tour. However, Netanyahu remains steadfast, stating that Israel will not be deterred by international pressure in achieving its war objectives.


During a cabinet meeting, Netanyahu emphasized the necessity of continuing the offensive until all goals are met, including eliminating Hamas, securing the release of hostages, and neutralizing Gaza's threat to Israel. He asserted that Israel will extend its military operations to Rafah, a move he believes is vital for achieving these objectives.


Netanyahu criticized his detractors for overlooking the initial Hamas attack on October 7, which triggered the ongoing conflict. The attack resulted in significant casualties and the abduction of over 250 Israelis. According to the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza, the conflict has claimed over 31,400 lives.


Despite international condemnation, Netanyahu remains resolute. He is scheduled to meet Chancellor Scholz later, where he is expected to face renewed opposition to the planned offensive.


Germany has expressed concerns about the potential humanitarian impact of such an operation, warning against a significant increase in casualties, which could jeopardize prospects for peace.


The United Nations and the United States have also cautioned against a full-scale assault in Rafah, highlighting the catastrophic consequences it could have.


Amid mounting pressure, Israel has announced plans for a military operation in Rafah and is preparing for the evacuation of civilians. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) intend to relocate displaced Palestinians to designated "humanitarian islands" within Gaza, although details about these islands remain unclear.


Talks for a ceasefire are set to resume in Qatar, with an Israeli delegation expected to participate. However, the timing of their departure remains uncertain.


Israel's handling of the conflict has drawn criticism for the high civilian casualties and shortages of aid, raising concerns about the humanitarian situation in Gaza.


In response to the escalating tensions, US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has called for elections in Israel to replace Netanyahu, sparking a contentious debate within the Israeli political landscape.

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