The Israeli military will continue operations launched overnight in the Gaza Strip, targeting Hamas tunnels and other infrastructure, as well as the movement’s leaders, until new orders are issued, Israeli Defense Minister Joav Galant said on Saturday. The Israeli army on Saturday again called on Palestinians to evacuate from northern Gaza in connection with a planned offensive. Meanwhile, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk announced on Saturday that his Starlink satellite communications system “will support connectivity with internationally recognized aid organizations in Gaza.”
– We attacked above and underground, we carried out attacks on terrorists of all levels, everywhere – said the Minister of Defense Israel Joaw Galant in a video posted on social media. – The instructions are clear: the operation will continue until a new order is issued, he added.
The minister said that “the ground shook in Gaza last night.” He said that the Israel Defense Forces had “entered a new stage of the conflict.”
Galant also said he and other senior defense officials had conducted an assessment of the operational situation. – Last night we ended the war phase. We will continue to be strong and precise. And we will get every terrorist, he announced. The minister ordered the continuation of attacks in Gaza targeting Hamas positions.
An appeal to the people of Gaza
On Saturday, the Israeli army again called on Palestinians to evacuate the northern Gaza Strip due to a planned Israeli offensive. Israel, which says Hamas is placing its weapons and forces among civilians, is urging Gazans to move south for their own safety, Reuters reports.
“This is an urgent military recommendation,” Israeli army spokesman Daniel Hagari said on social media. “For your immediate safety, we call on all residents of northern Gaza and Gaza City to temporarily relocate to the south,” he appealed.
He explained that “the upcoming IDF operation aims to neutralize the threat from Hamas with precision and intensity.”
Elon Musk will make the Starlink system available in the Gaza Strip
Musk commented on the statement by US House of Representatives member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez that cutting off communications in Gaza is “unacceptable.”
Aid groups say they are unable to communicate with their teams in the Gaza Strip after phone and internet services were cut during intense Israeli bombardment in support of the expanding ground operation.
Director of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus previously announced that contact with staff had been lost WHO, health care facilities and their employees. The humanitarian organization Red Crescent also said it had lost contact with the operating room in Gaza City.
Doctors Without Borders also said it had been unable to contact some Palestinian colleagues and was particularly concerned about “patients, medical staff and thousands of families seeking refuge at Al Shifa Hospital and other facilities.”
Starlink, operated by Musk’s SpaceX company, has been deployed, among others, in Ukraine shortly after Russia invaded the country in February 2022.
Escalation of the conflict in the Gaza Strip
The Hamas strike on October 7 from the Gaza Strip resulted in the highest number of Israeli deaths since 1973, when the Jewish state went to war with the Syrian-Egyptian coalition. About 1,400 people have died during the 21-day conflict. Israeli citizens and over 7.3 thousand inhabitants of the Gaza Strip.
PAP, Reuters, Jerusalem Post
Main photo source: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images