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Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

Violent fighting pits Israeli troops against Israeli troops. Palestinian fighters Saturday à Jabalia, in the north of the Gaza Strip and à Rafah, in the south, while in the eighth month of the war against Hamas, dissensions are widening at the top of the Israeli state.

Benny Gantz, member of the war cabinet, threatened to resign if a strategic “action plan”, particularly for the post-war in Gaza, was not adopted within three weeks. Before him, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant had already ordered Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on May 15 to “immediately prepare” a “governmental alternative to Hamas” in Gaza.

Mr. Netanyahu, who has so far refused “any discussion” about the future before “Hamas is annihilated”, accused Mr. Gantz, a political rival of the center-right, of risking “the defeat of Israel “, and wanting to “overthrow the government”.

On the ground, the Israeli army claimed on Saturday to have “eliminated around fifty terrorists” in the east of Rafah, the southern Gazan city adjoining Egypt, where its troops entered on May 7, causing a flight since of 800,000 people, according to the UN agency Unrwa.

According to AFP journalists, artillery fire and airstrikes continue in the east and northeast of Rafah.

The al-Quds Brigades, the armed branch of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, also claimed to be confronting Israeli troops in the east of the city, who entered this sector on May 7 .

– Evacuation orders in Jabalia –

Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

Children in front of a crater caused by an Israeli bombardment in Rafah, in the south of the Gaza Strip, May 18, 2024 © AFP – –

In the north of the Gaza Strip, the army ordered in the evening the “immediate” evacuation of western neighborhoods of the town of Jabalia, from where it said rockets were fired at Israeli cities.

At the beginning of January, Israel announced that it had neutralized Hamas in the north of the Palestinian territory, but according to the army, the movement – considered a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States and the EU – “totally controlled” Jabalia. a few days ago”.

Hamas reported “dozens” of deaths and “hundreds of wounded, accusing the Israeli army of targeting “residential buildings ” as well as “schools and shelters”.

Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

Children in a giant improvised dump next to a tent camp for displaced Palestinians in Khan Younes, in the south of the Gaza Strip, on May 18, 2024. © AFP – –

The Al-Quds Brigades claimed to have targeted an Israeli command center in Jabalia.

The conflict was triggered on October 7 by the Hamas attack in southern Israel, which resulted in the deaths of more than 1,170 people, mostly civilians. , according to an AFP report based on official Israeli data. Of the 252 people taken as hostages on October 7, 125 are still detained in Gaza, including 37 dead according to the army.

The military operation launched in retaliation by Israel in Gaza left 35,386 dead, mainly civilians, according to data from the Ministry of Health of the Gaza government led by Hamas, in power in the territory since 2007.

– An American envoy expected Sunday –

Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

The US military's temporary port in Gaza © AFP – Nalini LEPETIT-CHELLA, Valentina BRESCHI

After months of bombings and operations which ravaged the north and center of the Gaza Strip, and pushed hundreds of thousands of displaced people to Rafah, the Israeli army announced on Thursday that it was intensifying its operations in this city, with the objective announced to annihilate the last Hamas battalions there, despite international concerns.

Friday, 13 countries – Japan, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Australia, South Korea and seven EU member states including France – sent a joint appeal to Israel not to launch a large-scale offensive on Rafah.

Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

Displaced Palestinians arrive in Khan Yunes, southern Gaza Strip, May 18, 2024. © AFP – –

Israel's primary supporter, the United States, which also opposes a major offensive in Rafah, announced the visit to Israel on Sunday of the White House national security adviser, Jake Sullivan.

Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

Palestinians rush onto a humanitarian aid truck on May 18, 2024 near Nousseirat, in the center of the Gaza Strip, where a war pits Israel against the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas © AFP – –

Since Israel ordered the evacuation of the eastern sectors of Rafah on May 6, “800,000” people have “been forced to flee”, piling up in particular in Khan Younes, further north , indicated on X Philippe Lazzarini, the boss of Unrwa, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees.

Displaced from Rafah, Mohammad Baroud, who is waiting in line at a water point, describes a “very difficult situation” in Khan Younes. “Everything is destroyed in the region. All the houses are destroyed. There are no basic amenities for life,” he told AFPTV.

< img alt = "israeli army" src = "https://img-4.linternaute.com/nba5i62crzl17nnql_2fmb3-wou=/600x/smart/1b94aa0c3ed94a39a67477f0cec8b961/ccmcms- 587.jpg " />Photo released by the Israeli army on May 18, 2024, showing, according to it, humanitarian aid entering Gaza via a temporary American jetty © Israeli Army – –

While the delivery of humanitarian aid has been almost at a standstill for days, “more than 300 pallets” of material were sent for the first time on Saturday via a temporary floating jetty built by the United States, the Israeli army announced on Saturday.

But the UN and humanitarian organizations repeat that only the opening of road crossings can guarantee the necessary large-scale deliveries, in the small, overpopulated, besieged and threatened territory. of famine.

Since the deployment on May 7 of the Israeli army on the Palestinian side of the Rafah border crossing, Israelis and Egyptians have blamed each other for the paralysis of this crossing through which most of the fuel essential to hospitals and humanitarian logistics entered. .

Deliveries are also largely hampered at the Israeli-side crossings of Kerem Shalom and Erez.

Many Israelis demonstrated Saturday evening in Tel Aviv against Benjamin Netanyahu, demanding the return of the hostages.

Gaza: violent fighting in Jabalia and Rafah, dissension at the top of the Israeli state

Families of hostages held in the Gaza Strip and other demonstrators demand the return of the hostages, in Tel Aviv on May 18, 2024, against the backdrop of war between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas © AFP – JACK GUEZ

“Bring him home” read signs.

The Israeli army earlier announced that it had repatriated the body of a hostage, Ron Benjamin, 53, recovered in Gaza, where he had been taken dead on October 7. His remains were found with those of three other hostages whose repatriation had been announced on Friday.

All rights of reproduction and representation reserved. © (2024) Agence France-Presse

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116