Israel's IDF Recounts Operation To Rescue Two Israeli Hostages From Hamas In Southern Gaza
IDF Spokesperson RAdl. Daniel Hagari: We have a moral obligation to bring all our hostages home, an obligation that we will continue doing everything in our power to fulfill.
ISRAEL/GAZA - The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has released statements following the operation that was carried out in Rafah, Southern Gaza to rescue two Israeli hostages being held by the Hamas terrorist organization.
Yesterday, two Israeli hostages: Fernando Simon Marman and Luis Har were rescued during the operation in Rafah by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).
Palestinian television claims that 74 people were killed in the operation. During the operation Arab and Syrian media reported at least 100 deaths and dozens injured as a result of Israeli aircraft bombing 14 homes and 2 mosques.
Netanayu Had Said He Would Give Civilians Safe Passage To Cleared Areas North Of Rafa Before Beginning The Assault On The City
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his intention to go ahead with the plan to carry out a ground invasion on the remaining Hamas terrorists in southern Gaza, adding that "victory is within reach".
Israel had distributed fliers beforehand warning people to leave the region and travel north in areas cleared by the Israeli military ahead of a planned ground invasion in Rafah.
"Victory is within reach. We're going to do it. We're going to get the remaining Hamas terrorist battalions in Rafah, which is the last bastion," Netanyahu told ABC News on Saturday.
"We're going to do it. We're going to do it while providing safe passage for the civilian population so they can leave."
Netanyahu had said that he would give Gazan civilians "safe passage" out of Rafah before carrying out strikes on the city, adding that evacuees could move north into areas the Israeli military has cleared.
Many in Rafah, which include over 1 million displaced Palestinians, had fled from northern Gaza as Israel targeted Hamas terrorist organizations in the northern regions.
When Netanyahu was asked about where those in Rafah would evacuate to, he said "You know, the areas that we've cleared north of Rafah, plenty of areas there. But, we are working out a detailed plan."
Rafah borders Egypt to the immediate south, and the country has set up a border wall topped with barbed wire and fortified with around 40 tanks and armored personnel carriers in northeastern Sinai to block entry from southern Gaza.
The upgrades to Egypt's border were carried out, along with increasing surveillance along the border, in December before Israel began expanding its operation southward.