The one-and-a-half million people squeezed into Rafah by the Israeli military campaign are facing an even worse catastrophe as Israel contemplates continuing its offensive into the southern end of the Gaza Strip. Al Jazeera reports that panic is growing among Palestinians in Rafah for the simple reason that they have no place else to go once Israeli tanks start rolling towards them. “What people are experiencing in the southern part of the Gaza Strip is a surge in attacks from air, land and sea,” said an Al Jazeera reporter from Rafah.
“Gaza is one of the most densely populated places on Earth, and Rafah is now the most densely populated place in Gaza. Any sort of military campaign or air strike would amplify risks of disproportionate attacks,” said Omar Shaki, the Israel-Palestine director at Human Rights Watch. The population density of Rafah is reported to be as high as 22,000 people per square kilometer.