Hamas on Friday told Palestinians living in Gaza not to leave their homes, according to a statement sent to media organizations.
The armed group, which governs the territory, accused Israel of engaging in “psychological warfare” by sending messages that told Palestinian civilians and employees of international organizations to evacuate to the south.
“The occupation is attempting to spread and circulate false propaganda through various means, aiming to create confusion among citizens and undermine the stability of our internal front,” the statement said, referring to Israel.
Employees of “international institutions” remained at their posts and were not evacuating, the statement claimed. CNN has not independently verified the claim.
Israel is maintaining its bombardment of Gaza in response to Hamas terror attacks that killed more than 1,300 people and has amassed more than 300,000 reservists along its southern border — but has not confirmed whether it is planning an intensified military operation.
The Israeli military on Friday called on all civilians in Gaza City to evacuate "southwards." The UN has said the order for 1.1 million people to leave northern Gaza was "impossible" without major humanitarian consequences.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) on Friday said it has relocated its central operations center and international staff in Gaza to the south of the besieged enclave.