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Israel declares state of war for the first time in 50 years

Israel declares state of war for the first time in 50 years Israel's military-political cabinet supports declaration of war (Getty Images)

The military-political cabinet of Israel has supported the implementation of point 40 Aleph. It means an official declaration of war, according to the Office of the Israeli Prime Minister.

"Last night, the Security Cabinet approved the war situation and, to this end, the taking of significant military steps, as per Article 40 of Basic Law: The Government. The war that was forced on the State of Israel in a murderous terrorist assault from the Gaza Strip began at 06:00 yesterday (Saturday, 7 October 2023)," the statement says.

Israeli Defense Forces now have full freedom of action, including operational planning without consultation with politicians.

The last time Article 40A was introduced was 50 years ago during the 1973 Arab–Israeli War. At that time, Israel attacked a coalition of Arab states, including Syria, Egypt, Iraq, and Jordan.

As the Israeli state broadcaster notes, activating this point would allow:

  1. the government to issue orders for "significant military actions likely to lead to war"
  2. adjusting compensation payments to victims.

Ministers approved extraordinary rules allowing court hearings without the presence of detainees, due to difficulties in transporting detainees and police personnel.

It is also expected that tomorrow morning, the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee will hold special hearings to approve the mobilization of reserves.

Hamas' attack on Israel

Yesterday, October 7, Hamas attacked Israel. After a massive rocket bombardment of the country, militants entered the territory of Sderot, a small town in the Southern District.

Israel declared a state of war and launched the counter-terrorist Operation Iron Swords.

You can read all the details of the attack on RBC-Ukraine.

For Ukraine's and the world's response to the events in Israel, check out RBC-Ukraine's article.