The United Nations said early on Friday that it has been told by the IDF that some 1.1 million Palestinian Arabs in Gaza should relocate to the south within the next 24 hours.
"The United Nations considers it impossible for such a movement to take place without devastating humanitarian consequences," UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a statement quoted by Reuters.
"The United Nations strongly appeals for any such order, if confirmed, to be rescinded avoiding what could transform what is already a tragedy into a calamitous situation," he added.
Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Gilad Erdan, blasted the UN’s response.
"The UN response to Israel's early warning to the residents of Gaza is a disgrace! For many years, the United Nations has turned a blind eye to the arming of Hamas and its use of the population and civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip as a hiding place for its weapons and murder, and now, instead of standing by Israel, whose citizens were slaughtered by Hamas terrorists and which tries to minimize harm to those not involved, it preaches to Israel," Erdan said.
"It would be better for the UN to focus now on returning the abductees, condemning Hamas, and supporting Israel's right to defend itself," added the Ambassador.
In the meantime, Palestinian Arab sources reported continued Israeli air strikes in the Gaza Strip overnight. Al Jazeera reported at least 17 deaths in an IDF air strike in the central Gaza Strip.
Shortly after 1:00 a.m., after several hours of calm, sirens were sounded in Netiv HaAsara, located near Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip. There were no reports of rockets exploding in the area.
On Thursday, IDF fighter jets struck five residences operationally used by Hamas terror operatives, including the residence of a "Nukhba" (Naval Commando) operative, a terror operative of the "resistance committee", and an additional Hamas operations residence, where Yahya Sinwar's brother was presumably present.
IDF fighter jets also struck a Hamas monitoring situation room that monitored and traced IDF activity. As part of the strike, two terror operatives were targeted in the situation room.
The Hamas terrorist organization responded to the warning by calling on Gazans "not to fall for IDF propaganda" to evacuate.
The IDF later published the full text of its warning to the residents of northern Gaza.
"The IDF calls on all residents of Gaza City to evacuate their homes, move south for their protection, and settle in the area south of the Gaza River, as described on the map. The terrorist organization Hamas started a war against the State of Israel, and Gaza City is an area where military activity is taking place.
"This evacuation is for your personal safety. It will be possible to return to Gaza City only after a notification confirming that it is possible. Do not approach the area of the fence with the State of Israel. Hamas terrorists are hiding in Gaza City in tunnels under houses in Gaza City, and inside buildings with many innocent civilians.
"Gaza residents must move south for your personal safety and the safety of your families, Distance yourselves from the Hamas terrorists who are using you as human shields. The IDF will continue to perform significant operations in Gaza City in the coming days, and wishes to avoid harming civilians."