Dozens of people have been killed in Israeli air strikes on the Rafah district in the far south of the Gaza Strip, where hundreds of thousands of displaced Palestinians have sought refuge from Israel’s bombardment in northern Gaza.
At least 29 people were killed in air strikes on residential buildings on Tuesday.
Israel previously ordered Palestinians to evacuate to southern Gaza as it pounded the north in the first weeks of its assault on the besieged territory, but the military has since expanded its offensive to the south, leaving no safe places for civilians.
At least 13 Palestinians were also killed and many others injured in an Israeli air raid on the Jabalia refugee camp in northern Gaza, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Health in the enclave said.
Al Jazeera Arabic’s Anas al-Sharif said the scale of the destruction was “massive”.
“Victims are just lying on the ground. Many have been killed, bodies ripped apart. Even animals aren’t spared,” he said as residents carried the wounded while others placed bodies on donkey carts.
“The scale of the destruction is massive because this area was purposely bombed by Israeli fighter jets. Bodies are everywhere. This is beyond description,” al-Sharif said.
An elderly man called it “a massacre”.
“This is a residential area, and we are all peaceful civilians. Many of us were venturing out to try to find some food,” he said. “Where are those who speak of human rights? Look at all these civilians killed in a residential area.”
Ministry spokesperson Ashraf al-Qudra said on Tuesday that “214 people killed and 300 wounded have arrived at hospitals, and a large number of victims are still under the rubble and on the roads.”