Israel ordered people out of swathes of the main southern city in the Gaza Strip on Monday as it pressed its ground campaign deep into the south, sending desperate residents fleeing even as bombs fell on areas still described as safe.
Dozens of Israeli tanks entered the southern part of the Gaza Strip near Khan Younis earlier on Monday, witnesses told AFP. Armoured personnel carriers and bulldozers were also seen.
Many of those taking flight were already displaced from other areas of the territory, many sleeping rough under makeshift shelters with their few remaining belongings in plastic bags.
As many as 80 percent of Gaza's 2.3 million people have fled their homes in Israel's unprecedented bombardment that has reduced much of the crowded coastal strip to a desolate wasteland.
Medical officials in the enclave say the airstrikes and ground attacks have killed more than 15,500 people, with thousands more missing and feared buried in rubble.
Israel's resumption of deadly attacks on Gaza after a week-long truce with the Palestinian Hamas group had ripple effects around a region on the cusp of a wider conflagration.
Hamas fighters have clashed with advancing Israeli troops in the territory. Its armed wing continues to launch rockets at Tel Aviv and other Israeli towns and settlements.