GAZA STRIP: Israel's military said Thursday it had conducted an overnight raid into the northern Gaza Strip as part of "preparations for the next stages of combat," a reference to an expected ground offensive that has alarmed rights groups, Arab governments and humanitarian officials.
Video released by the Israeli military showed armored vehicles, including a bulldozer, advancing through a sandy area. The edited footage showed tanks firing shells and buildings being destroyed. The incursion came a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the ground assault could come at any time, declining to specify when.
"During the last day, IDF (Israel Defense Forces) ground forces, accompanied by IDF fighter jets and UAVs, conducted an additional targeted raid in the central Gaza Strip," the army said in a statement.
"As part of the activity, IDF aircraft and artillery struck terror targets belonging to the Hamas terrorist organisation in the Shujaiya area and throughout the Gaza Strip," the statement said.