Thousands Palestinians flee north Gaza as Israel steps up offensive
Zee Media Bureau
Gaza City: Thousands of Palestinians fled the northern part of the country shortly after Israel issued warning of stepping up attacks in Gaza, as per news reports on Monday.
For the first time, Israel also deployed troops in the area for a brief time. Tanks and soldiers have also been deployed at Gaza border triggering fears of ground offensive.
Israel attacked a rocket-launching site in northern Gaza on early Sunday and later dropped leaflets for the 100,00 civilians residing in the area asking them to vacate their home ahead of the military operation.
Adnan Abu Hassna, a spokesman for the UN agency in charge of aiding Palestinian refugees, reportedly said eight schools were opened as temporary shelters, and about 4,000 people had moved in.
He said more schools would be opened if needed.
Around 160 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched attacks in the last six days.
Despite calls by the United Nations, neither side is agreeing to ceasefire to put an end to violence.
Meanwhile, early Sunday, Israeli naval commandos launched a brief raid into northern Gaza to destroy what the military described as a rocket-launching site, an operation it said left four of its soldiers slightly wounded.