As gun battles raged between Israeli security forces and hundreds of Hamas group fighters in at least 22 locations, Israel’s defence minister Yoav Gallant today issued a threat to “change the face of reality” in Gaza.
Over 200 Israelis and 232 Palestinians were killed on Saturday in the deadliest escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in decades, after the Hamas group launched a massive rocket barrage and ground, air, and sea offensive, prompting Israel to respond with intense airstrikes.
“Today, we have seen the face of evil. Hamas launched a criminal attack, without distinguishing between women, children and the elderly. It will realise very quickly that it made a grave mistake. We will change the face of reality in the Gaza Strip,” Israeli defence minister Yoav Gallant said in a video statement.
היום, ראינו את פני הרוע.
החמאס פתח בהתקפה נפשעת, ללא הבחנה בין נשים, ילדים וקשישים. הוא יבין מהר מאוד שעשה טעות חמורה.
אנחנו נשנה את פני המציאות ברצועת עזה עשרות שנים קדימה.
אזרחי ישראל, במיוחד בשעות קשות אלו, התאזרו בסבלנות וגבו את כוחות הביטחון. pic.twitter.com/psu4BOJg3w
— יואב גלנט – Yoav Gallant (@yoavgallant) October 7, 2023
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to demolish Hamas strongholds in Gaza, reducing them to rubble, as the conflict continued to escalate.
READ |Explained: Israel-Palestine And A History Of Conflict
Rockets pounded Israel from Gaza from 6:30 am on Saturday, following months of growing violence in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with the highest death count in the West Bank, occupied by Israel since the 1967 Arab-Israeli conflict, in years.
“Israel is now at war,” Prime Minister Netanyahu declared to the shocked nation Saturday morning, in what was the 50th anniversary of the start of the 1973 Arab-Israeli War.
“I’m telling the people of Gaza: get out of there now, because we’re about to act everywhere with all our force,” he added. “We’ll strike them to the bitter end and avenge with force this black day they brought on Israel and its people.”
US President Joe Biden reaffirmed his “unwavering” support for the US ally, Israel, as the UN Security Council scheduled an emergency meeting for Sunday. He also warned against any adversaries of Israel exploiting the situation.
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