‘Disaster Upon Disaster’ – MSF Secretary General on Rafah Invasion

Displaced Palestinians in Rafah. (Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

“Clearly any ground invasion into Rafah would be an absolute catastrophe, it doesn’t bear thinking about, it would be disaster upon disaster,” the MSF official has said.

The secretary general of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has warned against Israel’s plans for a ground invasion of the southern Gaza city of Rafah saying it should not be allowed to happen.

Christopher Lockyear’s message on X came just as he crossed into Rafah to visit MSF teams in the besieged enclave on Monday.

“The sea of humanity as you enter is overwhelming, people are everywhere. A ground invasion of Rafah would be catastrophic and must not be allowed to happen,” Lockyear stated.

“We know that there are 1.5 million people forced into …the tiny Rafah area of Gaza. But to see it with your own eyes is just incredible,” he said.

Adding that “There are people everywhere, there are tents and makeshift shelters to the left and the right of me and there are kids literally everywhere which is a real shock.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday vowed not to bow to international pressure to halt his government’s genocidal war on the Gaza Strip.

We will operate in Rafah. This will take several weeks, and it will happen,” Netanyahu said.

Overflying Jets

The MSF secretary general further in his video message from Rafah said “We’ve just been overflown three times by a jet or by three jets which have just gone supersonic above the crowds and it is literally terrifying.”

“Clearly any ground invasion into Rafah would be an absolute catastrophe, it doesn’t bear thinking about, it would be disaster upon disaster,” he reiterated.

On Monday, the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, also appealed to Israel not to proceed with its planned ground assault on Rafah, warning that it will lead to more deaths and suffering.

‘In the Name of Humanity’ – WHO Chief Warns Israel on Rafah Invasion

“Further escalation of violence in this densely populated area would lead to many more deaths and suffering, especially with health facilities already overwhelmed,” Ghebreyesus said.

Over 31,800 Killed

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 31,819 Palestinians have been killed, and 73,934 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 7,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

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Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire.’

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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