The Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevic, confirmed this Thursday that its troops are surrounding Gaza City from different directions and that they are also operating in the city, which is located in the north of the Gaza Strip.
“We have advanced to another important stage in the war. Our forces are in the heart of northern Gaza and operate in Gaza City,” said Halevi, who said that Israeli troops “deepened” the offensive on the ground and had reached “achievements”, according to The Times of Israel.
However, despite celebrating progress in the northern Gaza Strip, Halevi emphasized the difficulty of the conflict. “The forces are fighting in a dense and complex urban area, which requires professional combat and courage,” the Israeli chief of staff added.
“The ground forces are accompanied by accurate intelligence, with fire from the air and from the sea. This association makes the combat more effective,” added Halevi, who emphasized that the Israeli military “will fight hand in hand against a fierce enemy.”
However, despite the complexity of the war scenario, Halevi stressed that Israeli troops have a “huge advantage” in their “comradeness and fighting spirit.” “The spirit of Israeli society and the justice of our cause are with us all the time,” he said.
On the other hand, Halevi lamented that the war has already had a “painful and difficult price” after the death of 18 soldiers during the ground operation, adding to the nearly 1,400 dead after the Islamic Resistance offensive. Movement (Hamas) on October 7.
During that attack, the Palestinian militia also took the opportunity to take more than 200 people hostage, regarding Halevi, who stated that the Israeli Army has an “obligation” to return them safely to their homes. Hamas has already released four people.
Fuel to the Gaza Strip
On the other hand, Halevi expressed his willingness to allow fuel to enter the Gaza Strip for use in hospitals, as long as the reserves in the Palestinian enclave are completely depleted.
“For more than a week we have been told that the hospitals will run out of fuel, and that has not happened yet,” said Halevi, who assured that if reserves run out, fuel will be sent but “under supervision.”
“We will do everything possible to ensure that it does not reach the infrastructure of Hamas and does not serve the goals of the war,” concluded the Israeli Chief of Staff, who stressed that the best thing for the security of the region is to stop Hamas from taking control of Gaza.
Later, the prime minister’s office, led by Benjamin Netanyahu, detailed that the Israeli head of government has never authorized the supply of fuel to the Gaza Strip. The US estimates that Hamas controls about 40 percent of the fuel stored in the Palestinian enclave.