Hundreds of cars, motorcycles and trucks loaded with belongings appeared on the streets of Gaza after warnings from the Israeli military that residents of the city should evacuate, the BBC reported. Many families leave the city on foot.
Photos from Gaza show residents packing their belongings and leaving their homes. There are children among those trying to get to safety. Almost half of the city’s inhabitants are under 18 years old, the BBC reported on Friday.
Mattresses were tied to many cars. People travel with cows, camels, sheep and donkeys. Many families travel on foot and have already had to walk several kilometers – describes the British station.
Paul Adams, BCC correspondent, reported that there was a fuel shortage in Gaza City and the streets were full of rubble from Israeli airstrikes.
Panic and chaos
Adams explained that Israel’s evacuation order for the southern Gaza Strip covers Gaza City and several surrounding towns, as well as two large refugee camps. It is one of the most densely populated areas of the Zone, with at least 1.1 million people living there. Approximately 600,000 people lived in Gaza City alone before Israel responded to the Hamas attack. Over two million people live in the entire Gaza Strip, in an area of only about 365 square kilometers, the BBC reported.
In turn, the AP Agency reported on Friday that there was panic in Gaza City upon learning of the evacuation order within 24 hours. The chaos further intensified after the announcement by the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, ordering civilians to stay at home.
The Israeli military said it did not confirm UN reports of only a 24-hour evacuation deadline because the movement of the population could take longer.
The UN warned that a hasty evacuation of such a large number of people could lead to a humanitarian disaster.
Main photo source: MOHAMMED SABER/PAP/EPA