“Death is better than leaving” – Some Gaza residents vow to stay despite Israeli warnings

Residents of Gaza refused to leave their homes even after Israel gave them a 24-hour notice of an impending all-out assault.

While some residents left the area, most remained despite a warning from the United Nations that the region was becoming an increasingly dangerous place to live.

‘Death is better than leaving,’ said Mohammad, 20, stands in the street outside a building destroyed by an Israeli airstrike around the center of Gaza City two days ago.

‘I was born here, and I will die here, leaving is a stigma.’

The United Nations warned that Gaza’s civilians were in a dire situation, with food and water running short and power supplies cut off after a week of Israeli air strikes and a full blockade of the Palestinian territory.

‘The noose around the civilian population in Gaza is tightening. How are 1.1 million people supposed to move across a densely populated warzone in less than 24 hours?’ U.N. aid chief Martin Griffiths wrote on social media.

Hamas, who launched an attack against Israeli civilians on Saturday, vowed to fight to the last man and urged Gaza residents to stay despite calls from Israel to evacuate the area, saying that Hamas was using civilians as human shields.