Israel intensifies attacks on Gaza | Free press

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The Israeli army is attacking a Hamas tunnel system in the Gaza Strip. Tank support from the Israeli side. Since the conflict escalated, 109 people have died in Gaza.

Jerusalem / Gaza (dpa) – According to its own statements, the Israeli military fired a complex attack on a tunnel system operated by Islamist Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

160 “planes” were involved, army spokesman Jonathan Conricus said in the morning. They had received support from the Israeli side, including tanks. So using it took about 40 minutes.

The goal was a Hamas tunnel system in the coastal area. It was called “Metro,” said Conricus. It is a kind of “city under the city”. Hamas has invested years in the construction of the tunnel system. The degree of destruction is still unclear. In support of, among other things, tanks from the Israeli side fired at targets in the Gaza Strip. Conricus stressed that no Israeli soldier had entered the Gaza Strip.

Israeli television had previously reported massive air force, artillery and armored forces attacks on the coastal strip. The army said in the night, “Air and ground forces are currently attacking in the Gaza Strip.” There were reports at the time that ground forces had entered the Gaza Strip. The army spokesman apologized for any miscommunication.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 109 people have been killed and 621 injured since the conflict began to escalate. As the military has announced, eight people have been killed by shelling in Israel so far.

As the military spokesman said, Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip have fired 1,800 rockets at Israel since Monday night. About 430 of them still fell in the coastal area. The military recently stated that the success rate of the iron-domed interception system averages around 90 percent.

Missile warning sirens sounded repeatedly in the morning, especially around the Gaza Strip. Police say a house in the town of Ashkelon was hit by a missile.

Israel blames the ruling Hamas in the Gaza Strip for all attacks from the Gaza Strip. The second largest Palestinian group is classified by Israel and the EU as a terrorist organization.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on the night of the attacks, “I said Hamas would pay a very high price.” The attacks will “continue with great intensity,” he said in a video message. “The last word has not yet been spoken and this operation will continue for as long as necessary.” Defense Secretary Benny Gantz had previously approved the mobilization of an additional 9,000 reservists.

Since the end of 2008, Israel and Hamas have fought three wars. More than 2,100 Palestinians and more than 70 Israelis were killed in the 50-day Gaza war in 2014, according to both sides. According to the UN emergency aid organization Ocha, 18,000 houses in the Gaza Strip have been destroyed or damaged.

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