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UNICEF warns 600,000 children are facing catastrophe in Rafah city of Gaza

UNICEF has warned that the 600,000 children crowded into the Rafah city face even greater danger as a result of Israel ordered evacuation due to the impending ground invasion.

The United Nations agency expressed concern that military operations in Rafah could cause high civilian casualties and completely destroy essential services and infrastructure.

In Rafah alone, where the population has reached 1.2 million, half of whom are children, many have already been displaced multiple times and have nowhere else to go.

UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russell emphasized the dire situation, stating that Rafah is now predominantly inhabited by children who lack safe places to go in Gaza.

She warned that a large-scale military operation would only exacerbate the chaos and panic, especially when children’s physical and mental well-being is already severely compromised.

Rafah’s population has swelled to nearly five times its normal figure of 250,000 residents, with approximately 78,000 infants under the age of two and 175,000 children under five affected by infectious diseases.

Amidst the conflict, UNICEF calls for a ceasefire and safe access for humanitarian organizations. The agency also highlights the staggering toll of the conflict, with over 14,000 children among the more than 34,735 people killed in Gaza according to the territory’s health ministry.

Despite concerns from various countries and aid groups, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to send ground troops into Rafah to combat Hamas fighters, regardless of any truce agreements.

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I am an experienced writer, analyst, and author. My exposure in English journalism spans more than 28 years. In the past, I have been working with daily The Muslim (Lahore Bureau), daily Business Recorder (Lahore/Islamabad Bureaus), Daily Times, Islamabad, daily The Nation (Lahore and Karachi). With daily The Nation, I have served as Resident Editor, Karachi. Since 2009, I have been working as a Freelance Writer/Editor for American organizations.

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