Rafah crossing
Rafah crossingצילום: עבד רחים חטיב, פלאש 90

The Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs published an official announcement on Sunday in which it voices its opposition to an expected Israeli operation in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip.

"The Arab Republic of Egypt stresses its complete rejection of the statements issued by high-level officials of the Israeli government regarding the intention of the Israeli forces to launch a military operation in the city of Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, warning of the dire consequences of such an action, especially in light of the risks it entails of exacerbating the humanitarian catastrophe in the Gaza Strip," the announcement states.

"Egypt calls for the necessity of uniting all international and regional efforts to prevent the targeting of the Palestinian city of Rafah, which now houses approximately 1.4 million Palestinians who were displaced there because it is the last safe area in the Gaza Strip. It considers targeting Rafah, and Israel’s continued policy of obstructing access to humanitarian aid, as an actual contribution to implementing the policy of displacing the Palestinian people and liquidating their cause, in clear violation of the provisions of international law, international humanitarian law, and the relevant resolutions of the Security Council and the United Nations General Assembly," it added.

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry added: "The Arab Republic of Egypt affirms that it will continue its contacts and movements with various parties in order to reach an immediate ceasefire, implement the truce, and exchange prisoners and detainees, calling on influential international powers to intensify pressure on Israel to respond to these efforts and to avoid taking measures that will further complicate the situation and harm the interests of everyone without exception."

The Associated Press reported earlier on Sunday that Egypt is threatening to suspend its peace agreements with Israel if the IDF launches a ground offensive in Rafah.

According to Egypt, fighting in the city is liable to force the cessation of the main route for humanitarian aid into Gaza. The warning comes as Prime Minister Netanyahu reiterated his commitment to launch a ground offensive that would eliminate the remaining Hamas battalions in the city.