‘THE CEMETERY OF INVADERS’
The tunnels underneath the cramped enclave are a major goal for Israel because it expands a four-day-old floor offensive – after three weeks of aerial bombardment – into Gaza from the north to hit Hamas in retaliation for the militant group’s lethal shock assault into southern Israel on Oct 7.
Among the 240 hostages that Israel says had been seized by Hamas that day are believed to be held within the tunnel advanced, posing an extra complication for the Israelis on prime of the difficulties of combating in a crowded city setting.
Hamas has instructed mediators it should launch numerous overseas captives within the coming days, its armed wing spokesman Abu Ubaida stated in a video on its Telegram account on Tuesday. He gave no particulars on the variety of captives or their nationalities.
The Israeli army stated its forces had struck about 300 targets over the previous day, together with anti-tank missile and rocket launch posts under tunnel shafts, in addition to underground Hamas army compounds.
Militants responded with anti-tank missiles and machine gun hearth, it stated. A variety of militants had been killed, it stated, with out specifying a quantity.
Hamas stated in an announcement its fighters had been engaged in fierce battles with Israeli floor forces, who had been taking losses. “The occupation is pushing its troopers into proud Gaza, which is able to at all times be the cemetery of invaders,” Hamas stated.
Two Israeli troopers had been killed in fight in north Gaza, the army stated on Tuesday, with out saying when.
The Israeli army has repeatedly known as for civilians to evacuate north Gaza southwards to keep away from the primary focus of its armoured onslaught. A whole lot of 1000’s have left however many have held on, residents say, for concern of everlasting displacement and lethal Israeli bombardments which have hit the south as properly.
Gaza well being authorities say that 8,525 folks, together with 3,542 youngsters, have been killed in Israeli assaults since Oct 7 UN officers say greater than 1.4 million of Gaza’s civilian inhabitants of about 2.3 million have been made homeless.
About 1,400 folks, primarily civilians, had been killed within the cross-border Hamas assault on Oct 7, Israel says.
Reuters has been unable to independently confirm casualty counts.
The al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s armed wing, stated militants clashed early on Tuesday with Israeli forces invading Gaza’s south, hitting 4 Israeli autos with rockets.
Later, it stated fighters ambushed Israeli armoured autos penetrating the central Jur al-Dik space of Gaza and destroyed three of them with al Yassin 105mm shells, earlier than withdrawing safely to keep away from an Israeli mortar barrage.
Israel’s army had no instant touch upon Hamas’ accounts.