Skip to main content

Israeli tanks storm Gaza City districts, residents report heavy fire

1 min

Israeli forces bombarded Gaza City early on Monday and columns of tanks advanced into the heart of the city from different directions in what residents said was one of the heaviest attacks in the Palestinian territory since the start of the war.

Palestinians, who fled the eastern part of Gaza City after they were ordered by Israeli army to evacuate their neighborhoods, carry their belongings, amid Israel-Hamas conflict, in Gaza City, July 7, 2024. Reuters/Dawoud Abu Alkas

Israeli forces bombarded Gaza City early on Monday and columns of tanks advanced into the heart of the city from different directions in what residents said was one of the heaviest attacks in the Palestinian territory since the start of the war.

The Israeli military said in a statement it was mounting an operation against militant infrastructure in the Gaza Strip, and that it had taken out of action more than 30 fighters.

The new Israeli offensive comes as Egypt, Qatar and the United States stepped up efforts to mediate a ceasefire agreement between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas as the Gaza war entered its tenth month.

Gaza residents said tanks advanced from at least three directions on Monday and reached the heart of Gaza City, backed by heavy Israeli fire from the air and ground. That forced thousands of people out of their homes to look for safer shelter, which for many was impossible to find, and some slept on the roadside.

Israel's military said it had warned civilians about its operations and it said a route would be opened so civilians could evacuate from affected areas. It said fighters with Hamas, and allied group Islamic Jihad, were hiding behind civilian infrastructure to attack Israeli forces.

The Palestinian Fatah Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades said they fired mortar bombs against Israeli forces during the raid in southwest Gaza City.

Hopes among Gaza residents of a pause in the fighting had revived after Hamas accepted a key part of a U.S. ceasefire proposal, prompting an official in the Israeli negotiating team to say there was a real chance of a deal.

Hamas has dropped a demand that Israel first commit to a permanent ceasefire before it would sign an agreement. Instead, the militant group said it would allow negotiations to achieve that throughout the six-week first phase, a Hamas source told Reuters on Saturday.

But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insisted the deal must not prevent Israel from resuming fighting until its war objectives are met. Those goals were defined at the start of the war as dismantling Hamas' military and governing capabilities, as well as returning Israeli hostages.

By Nidal al-Mughrabi

Tags

Related

Palestine

Squeezed by Israel, Palestinian Authority's role fades in West Bank

Roads torn up months ago by Israeli army bulldozers in Jenin refugee camp remain unpassable because the Palestinian Authority can't afford to fix them. Government employees are being paid a fraction of their salaries, and health services are collapsing.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Mena banner 4

To make this website run properly and to improve your experience, we use cookies. For more detailed information, please check our Cookie Policy.

  • Necessary cookies enable core functionality. The website cannot function properly without these cookies, and can only be disabled by changing your browser preferences.