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Tanks of the Israeli army entered the Gaza Strip - NYT

Tanks of the Israeli army entered the Gaza Strip - NYT Israeli tanks entered the Gaza Strip (photo: Getty Images)

An Israeli military major has stated that Israeli forces and tanks entered the Gaza Strip and have been present there since yesterday, according to the New York Times.

Military spokesman Nir Dinor has stated that a portion of Israeli forces is engaged in combat within the Gaza Strip. However, he declined to confirm whether these actions marked the beginning of a full-scale ground operation that Israel had been planning in recent weeks.

According to him, Israeli forces and tanks have been making small forays into Gaza over the past two days.

"Our troops and tanks are inside the Gaza Strip — they’re shooting and they’re operating. But our troops and tanks were inside Gaza yesterday as well" Major Dinor said.

The second military official, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagar, had earlier informed reporters on Friday that Israeli ground forces were expanding their activities in the Gaza Strip without providing further details. Admiral Hagar also stated that military aircraft had struck underground terrorist infrastructure.

Subsequently, two unnamed U.S. sources in the White House indicated that Israel's strikes on the Gaza Strip appeared to be the beginning of a ground offensive but stressed that the scale of the operation was not yet clear.

Israeli ground operation against HAMAS

On the evening of October 27, an IDF representative, Daniel Hagar, announced the commencement of offensive activities in the Gaza Strip. The IDF began launching strikes on Gaza.

It was later revealed that Israel decided to attack the Gaza Strip due to HAMAS' refusal to release all hostages. Negotiations with the militants had reached an impasse.

The UN had previously adopted a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.