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Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin arrives in Israel

Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin arrives in Israel Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin arrived in Israel on Friday, October 13, planning to hold a series of meetings with Israeli top officials, according to The Associated Press.

Austin becomes the second high-ranking U.S. official to visit Israel after the recent Hamas attack. Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Israel.

It is expected that Austin will meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, and the Israeli Defense Cabinet.

As reported, the head of the Pentagon will also witness firsthand how American weaponry, provided to Israel, is being utilized.

Prior to his visit to Israel, Austin had been in Brussels, Belgium, where a Ramstein defense meeting took place on October 11, addressing Ukraine. This meeting was held at NATO headquarters and marked the first appearance of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Hamas attack on Israel

On Saturday, October 7, Hamas militants from the Gaza Strip infiltrated southern Israel. This was preceded by numerous rocket strikes on Israeli territory.

As of now, the Israeli military has regained control of the territory, but there remains a threat of militants within the country's borders. Israel has also faced attacks from Syria and Lebanon, with the IDF responding in kind.

Israel declared a "state of war" and vowed to retaliate against Hamas terrorists.

Today, the Israel Defense Forces called on residents of the Gaza Strip to evacuate to the south, giving them a 24-hour notice. The UN criticized Israel's call, with the media speculating it might be related to plans for a ground operation.