Hamas rocket fire and ground assault by Palestinian militants claimed the lives of over 300 in Israel. Expectedly, Israel declared a “state of war”, with the country’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowing to turn all known hideouts of the militant outfit into rubble, news agencies reported.
Scores of Hamas militants have infiltrated Israel in SUVs, motorcycles, and paragliders and opened fire at civilians during an early morning barrage that lasted over 30 minutes, The Mint reported.
Around 6.30 a.m. on Saturday (local time), a barrage of rocket fire began from Gaza into Israel, unleashing mayhem on several cities including Tel Aviv, Rehovot, Gedera and Ashkelon.
Netanyahu posted on social media, “The IDF will immediately use all its strength to destroy Hamas’s capabilities. We will destroy them and we will forcefully avenge this dark day that they have forced on the State of Israel and its citizens. As Bialik wrote: ‘Revenge for the blood of a little child has yet been devised by Satan’.”
“All of the places in which Hamas is deployed, hiding and operating in, that wicked city, we will turn them into rubble. I say to the residents of Gaza: Leave now because we will operate forcefully everywhere.”
“At this hour, the IDF is clearing the terrorists out of the last communities. They are going community by community, house by house, and restoring our control. I embrace and send heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families whose loved ones were murdered today in cold blood and endless brutality,” Netanyahu added.
According to the latest updates provided by agencies and The Times of Israel, as many as 1,590 people were wounded. Several civilians as well as IDF soldiers are reported to have been captured and brought to Gaza.
The Times of Israel added that Hamas boasted that the number of hostages is higher than Israel is aware of.