Following the UN’s worry over the hundreds of thousands of Palestinians being forced to flee locations throughout the territory, Israel declared on Monday that it was not attempting to drive Palestinian residents out of their homes in Gaza permanently.
The Nakba, or “catastrophe,” refers to the forced displacement of 760,000 Palestinians that resulted from the war that led to Israel’s birth 75 years ago. For this reason, any mention of Palestinian dispersal is extremely controversial in the Arab world.
Israel declared war on Gaza’s ruling Hamas after its strikes on October 7.
Israel’s ceaseless shelling and ground assault have resulted in almost 15,500 deaths, according to the Palestinian health ministry, raising alarm among foreign observers.
Since the collapse last week of a truce that allowed for the release of dozens of Israeli and other hostages in exchange for Palestinian prisoners, Israel has expanded its offensive in Gaza.
In its latest estimate, OCHA said around 1.8 million people in Gaza, roughly 75 percent of the population, had been displaced, many to overcrowded and unsanitary shelters.