newsIsrael at War

IDF seizes $1.4m in terror funds from Hamas home in Jabalia

Hamas leaders held secret summit in Turkey • Israel hits over 150 Hamas targets in 24 hours • Five IDF soldiers killed in Gaza.

Israeli troops operating in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, Dec. 18, 2023. Credit: IDF.
Israeli troops operating in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, Dec. 18, 2023. Credit: IDF.

Israeli forces found 5 million shekels ($1.4 million) inside the Jabalia residence of a senior Hamas terrorist, the Israel Defense Forces announced on Monday.

The money was located in suitcases, along with a cache of weapons, the army added.

Suitcases containing millions of shekels for terrorists activities found in the Jabalia home of a senior Hamas terrorist, Dec. 17, 2023. Credit: IDF.

Israel’s war against Hamas, sparked by the terror group’s attack on the Jewish state on Oct. 7, continued on Monday, with the IDF striking more than 150 terrorist targets in the Gaza Strip in the past 24 hours, from the air, sea and land.

The IDF’s 646th Paratrooper Brigade attacked terrorist infrastructure on Sunday, locating weapons, explosives and RPG-type rockets and combat equipment.

A stockpile of mortars and ammunition was found in a basement at the same site. In addition, the forces located and destroyed shafts and pits in the area used for firing rockets at Israeli territory.

A terrorist cell was eliminated by an attack helicopter in the Khan Yunis area.

Israeli Navy forces struck Hamas targets in support of ground forces.

Five more soldiers killed in Gaza

The names of four soldiers killed in action in the Gaza Strip were released for publication on Monday.

Maj. Urija Bayer, 20, from Ma’alot-Tarshiha, was fatally wounded in southern Gaza on Dec. 14.

Sgt. Liav Alosh, 21, from Gedera; Sgt. Eitan Naeh, 26, from Kibbutz Sde Eliyahu; and Maj. Tal Filiva, 23, from Rehovot, were also slain in southern Gaza.

The IDF later on Monday published the name of another soldier killed in action in the northern Gaza Strip on Sunday—Sgt. (res.) Lidor Yosef Karwani, 23, from Eilat.

Sgt. (res.) Lidor Yosef Karwani, 23, from Eilat. Credit: IDF.

At least 127 soldiers have been killed in action in Gaza since the start of the IDF ground operation on Oct. 27; 459 Israeli soldiers have died since the war began on Oct. 7.

Hamas officials meet in Turkey

Senior Hamas officials held a secret summit in Turkey last week, Israeli media reported on Monday.

Attending the meeting were Hamas deputy leader Saleh al-Arouri and former Hamas chairman Khaled Mashal, according to the reports.

The meeting took place in Turkey because the country was considered safe enough for the terror leaders to meet. Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency has orders to assassinate the terror group’s leadership anywhere in the world.

According to the reports, the purpose of the meeting in Turkey was to coordinate the next steps in the war launched by Hamas on Oct. 7, when thousands of heavily armed terrorists stormed the border, murdering around 1,200 people, wounding over 5,000 others and taking another approximately 240 hostages back to Gaza.

Also reportedly discussed was the Lebanese arena of the conflict and the possibility of negotiating another hostage-for-terrorist deal in exchange for a pause in fighting.

Over 100 aerial threats intercepted

The Israeli Air Force has intercepted more than 100 aerial targets threatening Israel since the start of the war, the military revealed on Monday.

These include several cruise missiles launched into Israeli airspace.

“IAF Command and Control Array and Fighter Array personnel identified the targets, tracked their trajectories and activated the air force, including fighter jets and additional means, to thwart the aerial threats,” the statement said.

Aborted strikes due to civilians

The IDF on Monday published a video compilation of aerial strikes in the Gaza Strip that were aborted because of the presence of civilians in the target area, including children.

“Hamas sees civilian death as a strategy, we see it as a tragedy, which is why we use many measures to try and minimize the civilian harm and suffering. That is the tragic reality in this war that Hamas started,” IDF Spokesperson Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said in an English-language video message.

“We warn civilians before attacks, whenever possible. We also recommend civilians to temporarily move away from areas of intense fighting,” Hagari continued.

“Our intent is to defeat Hamas and secure the release of our hostages. The tragic suffering of civilians in Gaza—is not our intent,” he said.

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