UNRWA chief: Forced displacement, collective punishment happening in Gaza

The head of the United Nations Palestinian refugee agency (UNRWA) warned the Security Council on Monday that Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip were being subjected to forced displacement and collective punishment.

UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini also said a communication blackout over the weekend had accelerated the breaking down of civil order and warned that if that breakdown worsened it “will make it extremely difficult, if not impossible” for the UN to continue operating in Gaza.

Israel has renewed warnings for civilians to move from the north of Gaza to the south as it began an advance late on Friday to pursue Hamas militants it says are hiding in a labyrinth of tunnels under Gaza City.

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