At least 14 people, including 5 children, have been reported killed in a series of Israeli airstrikes targeting residential areas in the city of Rafah, located in southern Gaza. Eyewitnesses and local journalists on the ground have provided harrowing details of the devastation caused by the attacks.
According to eyewitness accounts relayed to CNN by journalist Tareq Al Hilou, the airstrikes struck residential buildings in the Tal Al-Sultan and Saudi neighborhoods in the western part of Rafah. The intensity of the bombardment was particularly severe in areas close to the border with Egypt, resulting in significant casualties.
Meanwhile, in Khan Younis, situated in the southern region of Gaza, residents endured a barrage of rockets fired indiscriminately over residential neighborhoods during the early hours of Thursday. Al Hilou described the situation as dire, especially in the eastern part of the city, where the attacks caused panic and destruction.
Tragically, the violence extended to central Gaza, where journalist Nafez Abdul Jawad, working for Palestine TV, lost his life when an Israeli missile struck the house he was residing in. Eyewitness Mohammad Al-Sawalhi, also a journalist in central Gaza, recounted the devastating impact of the attack, highlighting the indiscriminate nature of the strikes.
In Gaza City, located in the northern part of the strip, eyewitness Khader Al Zaanoun reported multiple casualties and injuries following Israeli forces' firing on civilians in various areas, including University Square, Al Sina’a, Al Matar Intersection, and Al-Saraya. Zaanoun expressed grave concern as victims awaited urgent medical attention, with ambulances reportedly facing obstacles in reaching the wounded.
The escalating violence in Gaza has reignited international concerns over the plight of civilians caught in the crossfire of the conflict. Calls for an immediate ceasefire and renewed efforts towards a lasting resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict have intensified in the wake of these tragic events.
The Israeli military has yet to respond to inquiries regarding the airstrikes and the civilian casualties resulting from the attacks.