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PM promised: No operation in Rafah without Egypt

Despite a recent claim by Prime Minister Netanyahu that he had ordered the IDF to begin operations in Rafah, Kan reports that during US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s meetings with Israeli political officials, he was promised that Israel would not begin operating in Rafah or the Philadelphi Corridor without full coordination with Egypt.

  • Blinken expressed concern about the operations in Rafah and asked when they would begin and if it was possible to minimize collateral damage. He was told: “We will not conduct operations in Rafah while there are so many people there, we are attempting to find a solution to evacuate the residents.”

Blinken likewise ask the Prime Minister to find a solution for the issue of humanitarian aid being blocked by protesters at the Kerem Shalom crossing.

According to the report, the operation in Rafah is not expected to begin in the near future.

Israel will first need to evacuate civilians, and so will not be able to operate with 1.2 million Gazans in the region. Israel’s main challenge is finding a destination to which to transfer them, especially with Israel continuing to object to their return to northern Gaza. Any operation would likewise require coordination with Egypt.

Over the last few days, Israel has negotiated with Egypt regarding “the day after.”

The negotiations have been led by ISA director Ronen Bar and COGAT commander Ghassan Alian. Israel sees the Egyptians as the most significant party in the day after, as the Egyptians are the only other land crossing into Gaza and an influential power in the Arab world.

Source: Arutz Sheva