Monday, June 17, 2024

Israel expects “another seven months” of conflict in Gaza

Israel's head of national Security Council has stated Tel Aviv expects "another seven months of fighting" in the Gaza Strip to achieve the "objective of destroying Hamas." More than 36,000 Palestinians have been so far killed in the Gaza war.

In a radio interview on the Israeli station Reshet bet on Wednesday, Tzachi Hanegbi said: “It was honestly stated in the first days of presenting the plans to the cabinet that the war would be long”.

“It is built on a staged basis, with the year 2024 defined as a year of combat. We are now in the fifth month of 2024, which means we expect another seven months of fighting to deepen our achievements and achieve our goal of destroying the military and governmental capabilities of Hamas and Islamic Jihad.”

“You need to have patience and know how to stand strong. This resilience is what has allowed this nation to survive for 75 years, and even for 3,000 years before that. Just don’t use a stopwatch on ourselves or set ultimatums,” he added.

Later on Wednesday, an Israeli military spokesman claimed the army had gained “operational control” over the narrow Philadeplhi Corridor, a buffer zone between Egypt and Gaza that was created as part of the 1979 peace treaty between Israel and Egypt.

“In recent days, our forces have taken operational control of the Philadelphi Corridor,” army spokesman Daniel Hagari stated in a televised address.

Hanegbi’s remarks raise questions about the future of Gaza and what kind of role Israel will play in it. Already, top ally the US has demanded that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu produce a postwar vision for the Palestinian territory, and his defence minister and a top governing partner have warned that he must take steps to ensure that Israel does not remain in Gaza indefinitely.

Israel’s assault has already devastated Gaza’s urban landscape, displaced most of the territory’s population and sparked a humanitarian catastrophe and widespread hunger. Israel claims it must dismantle Hamas’s last remaining battalions in Rafah and also announced it will seek indefinite security control over the Gaza Strip.

Hamas has rejected any postwar plan that excludes the group, reiterating that it will remain in Gaza.

More than 36,000 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s Gaza aggression, according to health officials.

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