The Israel Defense Forces has struck more than 15,000 terror targets in Gaza since the start of “Operation Swords of Iron” on Oct. 7, when Hamas launched a mass-murder assault on southern Israel, the military announced on Friday. It also seized more than 6,000 weapons, including anti-tank missile launchers, anti-aircraft missiles, rockets and mortars, explosives and ammunition.
IDF International Spokesperson Lt. Col. Richard Hecht stated on Friday that Israel is facing a multi-front dynamic, as projectile attacks from Yemen, Syria and Lebanon occurred over the past 25 hours.
“Our focus is with Hamas, I’ve said it before, and I’ll repeat it, but we’re dealing with terror groups all over the Middle East,” said Hecht.
He added that in the northern Gaza Strip, “we’re slowly closing in. Countering and closing in.”
Earlier on Friday, the IDF said it acted on intelligence to kill numerous Hamas’s Nukbha terrorists on Thursday who participated in the Oct. 7 attacks. Among those terrorists were Ahmed Musa, a company commander, and Omar Al-Hindi, a platoon commander—both located in western Jabalya.
“Ahmed Musa was one of the commanders of the invasion into the Zikim Base, Kibbutz Zikim and the Yiftach Post. Over the last day, he led attacks against IDF troops in the area of western Jabalya,” said the military.
“Additionally, based on IDF and ISA [Shin Bet] intelligence, the head of the Sniper Array of Hamas’s Northern Brigade, Mohammed Kahlout was killed,” it added. “Based on ISA intelligence, IDF troops struck overnight 19 Hamas terrorists who planned to attack IDF troops.”
Furthermore, IDF troops struck a shipping container located at a beach containing approximately 20 rocket launchers.
“In recent days, combined IDF forces have continued to strike numerous terror targets in the Gaza Strip, including operational command centers, terror and rocket infrastructure, weapons and logistics depots, launch posts, terror tunnels, numerous Hamas terrorists, as well as command, control and intelligence targets,” the military stated.
It continued, saying that “the coordination between aerial, naval and ground forces continues, as hundreds of targets—guided by intelligence and infantry—are struck in short timeframes” by the Israeli Air Force and Israeli Navy.
‘The threat is still high’
A rocket barrage on central Israel on Friday sent shrapnel into a vehicle, injuring two women in Tel Aviv, one moderately and one lightly, according to paramedics. A piece of shrapnel also fell in Rishon Letzion but did not cause injuries.
“The threat from Gaza is still high,” said Hecht. “It shows how well-prepared they were for this.”
The IDF expanded its humanitarian corridor along Salah Al-Din Road, opening times from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., he said, while a second coastal route was also opened. Some 65 trucks of international aid were inspected and crossed into Gaza via the Rafah border crossing, he said.
In the north, three aircraft infiltrated Israeli territory from Lebanon on Friday. One was intercepted by the IDF Aerial Defense Array, and the other two fell in an area in the north. The event has concluded, and the incident is under review, according to the military.
In response to the launches over the past day, the IDF is striking Hezbollah terror targets.
Three Israeli soldiers were severely injured due to an anti-tank missile launched at an IDF post in the area of Manara, a kibbutz in northern Israel. Also late on Friday, an IDF soldier was severely injured and another one moderately injured from the fall of a hostile aircraft that infiltrated into Israeli territory from Lebanon.
The soldiers were evacuated to receive medical treatment, and their families have been notified.
“The IDF holds the Syrian regime fully responsible for every terror activity emanating from its territory. The IDF will respond severely to every aggression against Israeli territory,” it said.