The United Nations (UN) has received communication from the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) advising that approximately 1.1 million Palestinians residing north of Wadi Gaza should move to the southern part of the enclave within a span of 24 hours.
This communication comes ahead of potential further IDF actions and includes a directive that applies to UN personnel as well as those taking refuge in UN establishments, encompassing educational institutions, healthcare centers, and clinics in the designated areas.
UN’s Response to the Directive
In response, the UN expressed serious reservations regarding the feasibility of such a vast relocation and its subsequent humanitarian repercussions. “The United Nations considers it impossible for such a movement to take place without devastating humanitarian consequences,” a UN spokesperson stated.
To further emphasize the gravity of the situation, the spokesperson added, “The United Nations strongly appeals for any such order, if confirmed, to be rescinded, avoiding what could transform what is already a tragedy into a calamitous situation.”
The notification was conveyed to the team leaders of the UN Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the UN’s Department of Safety and Security in Gaza by their liaison officers in the IDF.
Gaza’s Current Situation
Gaza currently faces challenges with Israel having imposed a blockade. Key utilities like water, electricity, and gas have been affected. Israel has closed its border crossings to Gaza and there have been airstrikes on Egypt’s Rafah crossing, temporarily making it inoperative.
This decision comes after military actions by Hamas the previous Saturday.
Impact on the Residents
It’s estimated that roughly 1.1 million Palestinians live north of Wadi Gaza. The magnitude of the relocation and its potential humanitarian implications raise concerns among various international stakeholders.