International concerns about Israel's proposed offensive in Rafah, the southern Gaza metropolis teeming with Palestinian refugees, are mounting.
"Over half of Gaza's population are sheltering in the area," according to UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron, while "many civilian casualties" could occur, according to Dutch Foreign Minister Hanke Bruins Slot.
If Rafah was attacked, Saudi Arabia threatened "very serious repercussions".
The leaders of Hamas in Gaza warned that "tens of thousands" of people could be killed.
After more than 1,200 people were slain in southern Israel on October 7th by Hamas terrorists, Israel began its operations in the Palestinian village.
According to the health ministry administered by Hamas, since then there have been around 27,900 deaths and at least 67,000 injuries in Gaza.
After being forced to abandon their homes at least once, many Gazans eventually found themselves in Rafah.
A day prior to an increased operation against Hamas, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had given the order for his soldiers to get ready to evacuate residents from the city. This was when the warnings on Saturday occurred.
"If four Hamas battalions remain in Rafah and Hamas is not eliminated, the war's objective cannot be achieved. According to Mr. Netanyahu's administration, "it is evident that the high level of activity in Rafah necessitates keeping civilians out of the combat zones."
The terms of Hamas' most recent ceasefire proposal were likewise rejected by the prime minister.
The EU and UN have also voiced their fears, and the US has already warned Israel that an invasion of Rafah as part of its attack on Gaza would be a "disaster".
The city on the Egyptian border cannot have every resident evacuated, according to relief organizations.
The BBC's Barbara Plett Usher was informed by UN humanitarian coordinator Jamie McGoldrick, who recently visited Gaza to evaluate the situation, that if Israeli troops started their onslaught, the residents of Rafah would have "nowhere to go."
"The locations that were designated as safe have become unsafe. If these individuals need to go, where are they able to go? He expressed his fear that the terrible situation they find themselves in could only worsen.
It is estimated that there are 1.5 million Palestinians in Rafah who are fleeing Israeli combat operations throughout the Gaza Strip. The majority of them reside in tents.