Israel’s ground operation reaches Gaza’s beach
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have deployed tanks and armored bulldozers on the beach of northern Gaza, as part of their ground operation against Hamas, the Palestinian armed group that controls the enclave.
The IDF said it had launched a “targeted operation” on Saturday, October 28, to destroy Hamas’ infrastructure and anti-tank missile launching positions along the coast. It said it had used Merkava tanks and Caterpillar D9 armored bulldozers, which are capable of clearing obstacles and digging trenches.
The IDF released a video showing the vehicles moving on the sand, very close to the sea. A breach in the perimeter fence, through which the vehicles entered Gaza, was clearly visible. Satellite imagery taken on Monday also showed several breaks in the border wall and vehicle tracks, where the IDF had crossed into northwestern Gaza.
The IDF said it had taken all necessary precautions to avoid harming civilians and fishermen, and that it had coordinated with the Egyptian authorities and the United Nations before the operation. It also said it had encountered minimal resistance from Hamas, and that no Israeli soldiers were injured in the raid.
IDF Full out War
The operation was part of the IDF’s wider ground offensive in Gaza, which began on October 7, after Hamas gunmen stormed into southern Israel and killed more than 1,400 civilians and soldiers. The IDF said it had killed more than 9,000 Hamas fighters and destroyed hundreds of rocket launchers and tunnels in Gaza, and that it had suffered 69 casualties, mostly soldiers.
The IDF said it was advancing towards the center of Gaza City, where it expected to face fierce resistance from Hamas. It said it had seized control of several key buildings and areas in northern Gaza, including the Palestinian Legislative Council building, the police headquarters, the main power plant and the Jabaliya refugee camp.
The war between Israel and Hamas has caused immense suffering and damage to both sides, as well as to the civilian population in Gaza. The UN has said that more than half of Gaza’s population lacks access to basic services and humanitarian aid, and that more than 30,000 people have been injured by Israeli attacks.
The international community has urged both sides to de-escalate the situation and resume negotiations for a lasting peace. However, both Israel and Hamas have rejected any calls for a ceasefire without meeting their conditions.
Israel has demanded that Hamas stop firing rockets and disarm completely. Hamas has demanded that Israel end its blockade of Gaza and its occupation of East Jerusalem.