Completing preparations for ‘significant ground operation’ in Gaza Strip: Israel
Tel Aviv: The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has said it has been completing preparations for a “significant ground operation” in the Gaza Strip, the media reported.
In a statement, the IDF says it is readying to “expand the offensive” by implementing a “wide range of offensive operational plans” which it says include a “joint and coordinated attack from the air, sea and land”, the Times of Israel reported.
The IDF says it is finalizing the draft of hundreds of thousands of reservists, as the logistics directorate is working to provide troops with all the equipment they will need for the ground offensive.
“In recent days, the tools required for combat have been transferred to the assembly areas, and at this stage the various units of the Technological and Logistics Directorate are working to complete the qualification of the tools and equipping them with advanced combat means, as needed,” the IDF says.
“IDF battalions and soldiers are deployed all over the country and are prepared to increase readiness for the next stages of the war, with an emphasis on a significant ground operation,” the military adds, Times of Israel reported.
The military is expected to launch a ground invasion in the Gaza Strip, but its extent and when it is carried out may be affected by operational considerations, including the evacuation of Palestinian civilians from northern Gaza and growing tensions on Israel’s northern border, the report said.
Iran has demanded Israel stop its attacks on Gaza, warning the war could expand to other parts of the Middle East if Hezbollah joins the battle, adding Israel may suffer “a huge earthquake”, the media reported.
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told reporters in Beirut that Lebanon’s Hezbollah group has taken all the scenarios of a war into consideration, and Israel should stop its attacks on Gaza immediately, Al Jazeera reported.
Amir-Abdollahian said he met Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.
“I know about the scenarios that Hezbollah has put in place. Any step the resistance (Hezbollah) will take will cause a huge earthquake in the Zionist entity,” he said, Al Jazeera reported.
“I want to warn the war criminals and those who support this entity before it’s too late to stop the crimes against civilians in Gaza, because it might be too late in few hours,” the report said.