Israel-Hamas war: Israel says it has expanded ground operation to ‘every part’ of Gaza Strip

KHAN YUNIS, GAZA - DECEMBER 3: Palestinian citizens inspect the destruction caused by air strikes on their homes on December 03, 2023 in Khan Yunis, Gaza. Israel steps up military operations in Gaza after a sustained truce between Hamas and Israel did not hold further than a week despite diplomatic talks and captives released. (Photo by Ahmad Hasaballah/Getty Images)

KHAN YOUNIS, Gaza Strip — Israel’s military said it has expanded its ground operation into “every part” of the Gaza Strip.

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After a weeklong cease-fire that ended Friday, the Israeli military resumed its offensive, The Associated Press reported. The Israeli military’s focus has been its ground operation over the last weeks in northern Gaza.

Israeli military spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said that Israeli troopers are pushing into the south as most of the region’s population fled to that area for safety, the AP reported.

“The Israeli army is continuing and expanding the ground operation against the Hamas presence in every part of the Gaza Strip,” Hagari said, according to the AP.

“We are tracking around the clock to locate the senior Hamas leadership in the Strip. The goal is to eliminate each and every one of them,” Hagari said, according to The Times of Israel.

Hagari revealed that Hamas’ Shati battalion commander was killed in an airstrike Sunday. He said that the commander “led the fighting in the Shati area and under his command, the plans to raid Israel during the October 7 massacre was carried out,” The Times of Israel reported.

In preparation, the military has ordered more evacuations of the south which was followed by heavy amounts of bombardment, the AP reported.

The Israel Defense Forces told people to evacuate multiple areas including southeast of Khan Younis which is in south Gaza, according to CNN. Later in the day Sunday, IDF told people to leave Jabalya, Shejaiya, Zaytoun and the Old City of Gaza, which is in the northern part of Gaza.

The United Nations estimates that there are about 1.8 million people in Gaza who have been displaced internally and had to leave their homes already, CNN reported.