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Israeli PM vows ground attack on Rafah 'with or paris saintwithout' deal

China u | paris saint | Updated: 2024-06-13 15:24:02

Children watch cartoon at a temporary camp in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, April 29, 2024. [Photo/Xinhua]

JERUSALEM - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged on Tuesday to launch a ground attack on Rafah "with or without" a deal with Hamas.

Speaking in a meeting with families of hostages, Netanyahu said that Israel has begun the evacuation of Palestinian civilians from Rafah, according to his office.

"We will enter Rafah and eliminate Hamas battalions there, with or without a deal, to achieve the total victory," he said.

Israel considers Rafah as Hamas's last major stronghold in the Palestinian enclave. Rafah is Gaza's southernmost city, where about 1.2 million Palestinians have been seeking shelter.

The remarks were made as Israeli and Hamas negotiators were in Egyptian-brokered talks on a deal for a ceasefire for the nearly seven-month-long Gaza conflict, that will secure the release of hostages.

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