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RAFAH/CAIRO: Gaza civil defence and aid officials said on Monday that Israeli jets struck two areas in eastern Rafah the Israeli military had ordered to be “evacuated”, ahead of a possible ground invasion of the Palestinian city.

“The areas targeted by the Israeli occupation are near the perimeter of Gaza International Airport, the Al-Shuka area, the Abu Halawa area, the Salaheddin street area and the Salam neighbourhood,” Gaza civil defence agency spokesman Ahmed Ridwan told AFP.

Another aid official confirmed the strikes.

Israel begins evacuating part of Rafah ahead of threatened assault

The Israeli military did not offer an immediate comment, but earlier on Sunday it ordered residents of Al-Shuka and Al-Salam to “evacuate” and move to a humanitarian area.

Osama al-Kahlut from the emergency operations department of the Red Crescent Society told AFP that the bombing was targeting eastern areas of Rafah.

“It is clear that it is targeting homes, but we have not received any communications or information about the presence of victims in the targeted areas,” he said.

Eastern Rafah resident Yaqub al-Sheikh Salama, 30, said the bombing was intense in Al-Salam, Al-Shuka, and other areas.

Hamas, Israel entrench positions at Gaza truce talks

“There are massive explosions and terrifying sounds of aerial and artillery bombardments,” Salam told AFP.

“Children and women are scared and don’t know where to go,” he said.

Saudi Arabia warns Israel against targeting Rafah

Saudi Arabia warned Israel against targeting Rafah as part of what it called a “bloody and systematic” campaign to storm all areas of Gaza and displace its citizens, the foreign ministry said in a statement on Monday.

Hamas says it accepts ceasefire proposal of Egypt, Qatar

Meanwhile, Hamas said on Monday that it had accepted a Gaza ceasefire proposal from Egypt and Qatar.

The group said in a statement that its chief, Ismail Haniyeh, had informed Qatar’s prime minister and Egypt’s intelligence chief of its acceptance of their proposal.

There were no immediate details over what the agreement entailed.

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