The Israel Defense Forces said Saturday morning that it struck over 400 terror sites in the Gaza Strip in the past 24 hours, as the war against Hamas resumed following a week-long ceasefire.
Airstrikes overnight Friday included an “extensive” wave of more than 50 attacks on Hamas infrastructure in the Khan Yunis area in southern Gaza, according to the military.
Naval forces also attacked Hamas terror assets in the region.
Heavy ground battles were fought near Khan Yunis after intelligence showed Hamas leaders entrenching in the city, Channel 12 also reported.
The IDF is widely expected to expand its ground operation to the southern Gaza Strip and has published a map splitting the area into scores of small zones, which will be used to notify Palestinian civilians of impending active combat.
“The people of Gaza are not our enemies. For this reason, the IDF is leading controlled and specific evacuations in order to remove them as much as possible from areas of combat,” the military said in a message to Gaza residents.
Overnight Friday, ground forces in northern Gaza called in airstrikes on several targets, including a mosque used by Palestinian Islamic Jihad to direct terror operations. The IDF also eliminated a terror cell that had ambushed troops.
Earlier, five IDF soldiers were wounded by a mortar shell that struck near Kibbutz Nirim, located close to the border with the Gaza Strip and 4.3 miles east of Khan Yunis. Three of the soldiers were in moderate condition while the others were lightly injured.
Air raid sirens blared across southern Israel throughout Friday, and in the country’s center later in the day, as Palestinian rocket fire expanded.
On Saturday, the IDF confirmed that terrorists in Lebanon fired numerous rockets at Israel the previous night. The Iron Dome missile defense system was not activated as the projectiles hit in open areas, causing no injuries or damage.
In response, the IDF shelled the area from which the launches were carried out, and fighter jets struck the terror cell responsible for the fire.
Later Saturday, the military said that aircraft and artillery were striking Hezbollah terror assets in Lebanon.
The IDF on Friday struck a terror cell operating in southern Lebanon after Hezbollah resumed attacks on northern Israel.
Several rockets were fired from Lebanese territory at military posts along the border near Rosh Hanikra and Moshav Margaliot, and Iron Dome intercepted two rockets launched at the city of Kiryat Shmona.
The IDF resumed combat operations in Gaza on Friday morning after Hamas broke a ceasefire by firing rockets at the Jewish state.
Amid renewed fighting, Israel’s government said it is committed to seeing that all the hostages return home.
To date, 110 people have returned to Israel. Eighty-six are Israelis and 24 foreign citizens. According to the latest numbers, 137 remain in captivity. Of those, 20 are women and 117 are men. They include 126 Israelis and 11 foreigners.
Hamas terrorists killed at least 1,200 people during its Oct. 7 attack on Israeli communities near the Gaza border.