Israeli air strike in Rafah kills at least 45 people

Health officials in Gaza say an Israeli air strike in Rafah on Sunday has killed at least 45 people. Footage taken by NHK at the site shows completely destroyed tents.

International criticism is growing as civilian casualties in Gaza continue to rise.

The attack by Israeli forces came after the International Court of Justice issued provisional measures ordering Israel to immediately halt its offensive in Rafah.

Footage taken by NHK's Gaza office also shows residents picking up canned food from burnt debris.

A man living nearby said he saw victims lying on the ground, and that they were women, children and elderly.

The Israeli military insisted that the strike was targeted at two senior Hamas members. It added that a number of steps had been taken to reduce the risk of civilian casualties.

The Israeli government said initial reports suggest that a fire broke out after the attack, which appears to have taken civilian lives.

The government also said civilian casualties are regrettable, "but this is the war Hamas wanted and started."