800,000 'forced to flee' Rafah since start of Israeli operation: UNRWA


Sunday, 19 May 2024 (13:53 IST)
The head of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) said 800,000 people had been "forced to flee" Gaza's southern city of Rafah since Israel began military operations there this month.
"Nearly half of the population of Rafah or 800,000 people are on the road having been forced to flee since the Israeli forces started the military operation in the area on 6 May," UNRWA chief Philippe Lazzarini said in a post on social media site X.
Following the evacuation orders, Gazans have fled to "the middle areas and Khan Younis including to destroyed buildings," he said
Israel has said the ground assault on Rafah was crucial to its fight against militants, insisting that it was the last Hamas stronghold in Gaza.
Before the operation began, Israel told Gazans sheltering in some eastern parts of the city to leave, describing its operation there as "limited."
Israeli army says it recovered another hostage body from Gaza
The Israeli army said that its forces operating in the Gaza Strip recovered the body of Ron Binyamin, who was among 252 people seized by Hamas-led gunmen in the cross-border October 7 rampage that preceded the ongoing war.
Military spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said Binyamin's body was recovered in the same operation in which troops recovered the remains of three other hostages, which was announced on Friday.
Citing intelligence information, the military said all four had been killed on October 7. 

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