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IDF Repeats Call to Evacuate Gazans Amid Int’l Pressure to Provide Aid

(JNS) The Israel Defense Forces on Wednesday morning, October 18 continued to call on Gaza residents to temporarily relocate to the southern Gaza Strip in anticipation of an Israeli ground invasion to destroy the Hamas terrorist group.

Gazans in the northern Strip and Gaza City are being asked to evacuate towards the open areas in western Khan Yunis, around Al-Mawasi, south of Wadi Gaza.

“If necessary, humanitarian aid will be sent there,” said IDF Col. Elad Goren, head of the Civil Department of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), in a video message.

“Hamas is trying to prevent the population from evacuating northern Gaza. Hamas continues to bring destruction upon Gaza and to endanger its residents,” Goren continued, repeating Israel’s call for the 1.1 million Palestinians living in the north to evacuate southwards.

Some 400,000 people have so far heeded the initial evacuation call, according to the Hamas terror group, which controls the Gaza Strip.

Hezbollah has fired at least seven missiles at northern Israeli towns and military posts over the past 24 hours. Two soldiers and a civilian were wounded on Tuesday morning in a cross-border anti-tank missile attack on the northern Israeli town of Metula—the first of three rounds of missile attacks throughout the day.

The terrorist group has been probing Israel’s northern border in the aftermath of Hamas’s Oct. 7 assault on the Jewish state, initiating a series of exchanges of fire as the IDF engages Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip.

Five Israelis—four soldiers and a civilian—have been killed on the northern front since the Hamas terrorist rampage in the south that left more than 1,400 people dead and 4,100 wounded, and at least 199 held hostage in Gaza.

According to a joint statement issued by the IDF and Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) on Wednesday, in the past 24 hours dozens of Hamas military targets were struck in the Gaza Strip, and two additional senior Hamas figures were killed.

The two were identified as Muhammad Alwadia, the commander of the anti-tank system of the Gaza City Brigade, and Akram Hijaz, a dealer in weapons and terror funds and an active member of the Hamas naval force. According to the statement, Hijaz had coordinated attacks in Israel.

A rocket fired at Israel by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group overnight Tuesday went off course and struck the Al Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City, according to the IDF. Hamas sources reported that hundreds were killed in the blast, which was initially blamed on an Israeli airstrike.

“Intelligence from multiple sources we have indicates that the PIJ organization is responsible for the failed launch that hit the hospital,” stated IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari. “An analysis of IDF operational systems indicates that a barrage of rockets was fired by terrorists in Gaza, passing in close proximity to the hospital at the time it was hit.”

“The entire world should know: It was barbaric terrorists in Gaza that attacked the hospital in Gaza, and not the IDF,” wrote Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “Those who brutally murdered our children also murder their own children.”

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