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Watch: IDF Urges Civilians to Leave Areas Targeted for Strikes

Leaflets dropped, phone messages sent to 100,000 people before major airstrike. Hamas dismisses humanitarianism as 'scare tactic.'
By Arutz Sheva Staff
First Publish: 7/16/2014, 5:18 PM

The IDF continues to warn civilians of impending airstrikes Wednesday, dropping leaflets and leaving phone messages urging residents to leave their homes in areas targeted for airstrikes in northern Gaza. 

Over 100,000 people were warned of the airstrike, according to AFP, and some 17,000 were estimated to have fled the area. 

Similar leaflets were dropped Tuesday night, as part of the IDF's traditional warnings to reduce harm to civilians living among Hamas terrorists; earlier this week, the IDF dropped leaflets above northern Gaza and sent cell-phone messages to locals as well, warning them to move away from Hamas command centers.

During the current escalation, Hamas has openly boasted about the "success" of its strategy of using civilians as human shields, and the IDF has published extensive evidence of the practice.

Hamas has in the past urged Gazans to ignore these warnings, in remarks caught both on Hamas-sponsored television and on the radar of international media outlets.

Hamas even made statements dismissing those warnings to AFP early Wednesday, claiming they were a 'scare tactic' as opposed to a humanitarian gesture. 

"This is part of the psychological war, intended to disrupt the domestic front," it said in a statement.