Hamas says the killing of dozens of Palestinians in Israeli air raids on Friday as they were heading to southern Gaza following the Israeli army’s evacuation order is “a heinous crime that will only increase our people’s adherence to their land.”
“The massacre reveals the extent of Israeli lies … and deception, after Israeli suspicious calls for our people to leave their homes. They were directly targeted by [Israeli forces] committing a heinous crime that will remain a testament to Zionist terrorism and aggression,” it said in a statement.
It added that despite the “systematic crimes and violations, covered by American and Western complicity and bias and the policy of double standards in their dealings with our just cause and legitimate rights, this war will not succeed in breaking the will of our people who stand united with their resistance, rejecting all forms of displacement from their land.”
More than 320 Palestinians have been killed in past 24 hours, including many women and children killed in Israeli air raids on convoys fleeing Gaza City, according to health officials in besieged enclave.
The rising toll comes as Israel continues bombing Gaza a day after telling 1.1 million residents to head south ahead of a looming ground offensive following Hamas’s attack inside Israel last week.
At least 2,215 Palestinians were killed and 8,714 wounded in Israeli air attacks on Gaza. The number of people killed in Israel has reached 1,300, with more than 3,400 wounded.
In the occupied West Bank, the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli fire in the past week has topped 50. More than 1,000 have been wounded and dozens arrested.