IDF Spokesperson, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, released a statement in English regarding the IDF’s operations against Hamas in Gaza and efforts to mitigate civilian harm.
"We have entered a new phase in our war against Hamas. Hamas broke the humanitarian pause when it violated the hostage release agreement by refusing to release women, children, and babies, as agreed. Hamas also fired rockets at Israeli homes. It should be clear to everyone by now: Hamas chooses war. " Hagari stated.
Hagari declared that as the IDF expands its operation, it remains committed to its goals of securing the release of the hostages and the dismantling of Hamas. He added that the IDF will continue to operate according to international law.
"We pursued them in northern Gaza; we now pursue Hamas in southern Gaza, too. We will operate with maximum force against Hamas terrorists and infrastructure while minimizing harm to civilians that Hamas places around them as shields," Hagari added.
According to Hagari, the IDF used the seven-day pause to "increase readiness, review intelligence, and refine operational procedures. We are implementing lessons learned for the new phase of this war, improving the efficiency and precision of our operations on the ground. We are pursuing Hamas wherever Hamas is hiding. In the north and in the south."
The Spokesman also addressed civilian casualties in Gaza: "Every civilian death is a tragedy - a tragedy that the IDF does not want and is taking extensive measures to avoid. When Hamas terrorists hide behind civilians, Israel does its best to distinguish between civilians and terrorists. We give precise instructions to Gazan residents near Hamas centers of gravity, urging them to temporarily move away from the danger that Hamas puts them in. We're dropping leaflets with QR codes that open a map guiding Gazans to safer areas."
Hagari also called on international organizations to assist in the evacuation of civilians and to ensure that the Red Cross gains access to Israeli hostages being held by the terror organization.