Red Cross Says Rafah Evacuation Not ‘Possible’ as Israel Prepares for Invasion

Israeli media reports that Israel will invade Rafah 'very soon'

A Red Cross official said Tuesday that an evacuation of civilians from Rafah was not “possible” under the current conditions due to the sheer destruction in Gaza as Israel is preparing to invade the city.

“When we see the level of destruction in the middle area (of Gaza) and in the north, it’s not clear to us where people will be moved to… where they can have decent shelter and essential services,” Fabrizio Carboni, Middle East director for the Red Cross, told AFP. “So today, with the information we have and from where we stand, we don’t see this (massive evacuation) as possible.”

Carboni said that the “probability” of a major Israeli operation in Rafah is “increasing.” His warning aligns with a report from Israel’s Kan broadcaster that said the Israeli military will launch the attack “very soon.”

In another sign that an invasion could be coming soon, Al Jazeera reported that satellite images show Israel is preparing for an escalation as it deployed a large number of troops and armored vehicles near Gaza. The report said at least 120 vehicles are stationed at Gaza’s northern border, and 700 are in the Negev desert to the south.

The US has claimed it’s against Israel invading Rafah without a clear plan to protect civilians but is not putting any real pressure on Israel since it continues to provide military aid and political support. US and Israeli officials discussed the potential assault last week, and the White House said the two sides had a “shared objective to see Hamas defeated in Rafah.”

In the meantime, Israel has intensified strikes across the entire Gaza Strip and ordered a new evacuation in the north. Israel has also stepped up its strikes on Rafah, and killed 22 people in the city, including 18 children, in attacks over the weekend.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.