‘War in Gaza until end of this year’

Israel predicted that it would continue waging war on Hamas in Gaza for the next seven months, till the end of this year.

The Israeli military controls three quarters of the buffer zone on the Egyptian border and aims to control all of it to prevent Hamas smuggling in weapons, Israel National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi said.

Fighting in Gaza would continue throughout 2024 at least, he added, signalling that Israel was not ready to end the war as demanded by Hamas, as part of a deal that would see the exchange of hostages it holds for Palestinian prisoners.

“The fighting in Rafah is not a pointless war,” he said, reiterating that the aim was to end Hamas rule in Gaza and stop it and its allies attacking Israel.

It said that as it send tank on raids into Rafah, Reuters reported.

The move into Rafah was done despite an order to stop the strikes from International Court of Justice.

ICJ ruled that Israel failed to explain how it would ensure evacuees in Rafah are safe and gain access to food, water and medicine.

The world court also instructed Hamas to release all its hostages taken from Israel on October 7 immediately and unconditionally.