Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel insisted Saturday that Israel would not bow to international pressure to call off its plan for a ground invasion of Rafah, the southernmost city in the Gaza Strip that is now packed with more than 1 million Palestinians.

Many of the people now in Rafah are displaced and living in schools, tents or the homes of friends and relatives, part of a desperate search for any safe refuge from Israel’s military campaign, which has dragged on for more than four months. Their lives are a daily struggle to find enough food and water to survive.

"Those who want to prevent us from operating in Rafah are basically telling us: Lose the war,” Netanyahu said at a news conference in Jerusalem on Saturday evening. "It’s true that there’s a lot of opposition abroad, but this is exactly the moment that we need to say that we won’t be doing a half or a third of the job.”