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Rafah will run out of food Sunday, aid agency says

(NewsNation) — Israel has begun military actions in Rafah against the objections from allies, including the U.S., ordering Palestinians to evacuate parts of the city, many of whom are already refugees.

Many Gazans fled to Rafah after being ordered to evacuate their homes in northern parts of the Gaza Strip. Scott Anderson, director of operations in Gaza for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees, or UNRWA, told NewsNation that many families in Rafah have gone through multiple displacements.

“There’s 1.5 million people currently living in Rafah, most of them displaced from all over the strip,” he said. “Many have been displaced five or six times. They really thought that when they got to Rafah, that would be the end of having to move, and now, they’re very much concerned about having to move yet again to somewhere that may not be safe.”

In the months since Israel’s war against Hamas began, the humanitarian situation in Gaza has deteriorated. UNRWA has warned that there is not enough aid flowing into the territory, which was already reliant on international help before Israel’s bombardment.

“We haven’t gotten any aid since Sunday, nothing,” Anderson said of southern Gaza. “If we don’t start getting aid, we will run out of food to provide by Sunday.”

Anderson said the stores are empty, there’s no commercial activity, and people are left to rely on any food they may have been able to save. Fuel and medicine are also lacking.

“We’re thinking about the innocent civilians and children that are still in Rafah and need time to evacuate somewhere safe,” he said. “We’re also thinking about how are we going to make sure to get enough food and water and medicine to everyone.”

Israel’s war cabinet recently voted to expand operations in Rafah despite objections from international leaders.