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‘Greatest battle to end last occupation on earth’: Hamas commander on Israel attack

Mohammad Deif said his outfit launched 5000 rockets into the country.

Several groups of gunmen crossed into Israel on Saturday, in one of the most intense attacks of the Islamist group Hamas against the country in years. The group claimed to have fired several thousand rounds of rockets into the country as its head described the offensive as the “greatest battle to end the last occupation on earth”. Hamas military commander Mohammad Deif, announcing the start of the operation on Hamas broadcast media, exhorted Palestians everywhere to join the fight.

“This is the day of the greatest battle to end the last occupation on earth,” he said, per Reuters.

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He also claimed his outfit launched 5000 rockets into the country.

Also read: Hamas pummels Israel with 5000 rockets, Palestine fighters storm cities: Updates

The attack activated an emergency response in Israel with sirens sounding across the country, including Jerusalem. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called an emergency meeting of security officials.

The fresh offensive came 2 years after Israel and Hamas fought a 10-day war that triggered a humanitarian crisis amid when the coronavirus pandemic was at its peak.

Israeli media on Saturday reported gun battles between groups of Hamas and Israeli forces. An Israeli woman was killed in the attack.

The residents of areas near the Gaza Strip have been asked to stay put at their homes.

The Israeli military said in a statement that a number of terrorists had infiltrated into the country.

The Hamas gunmen reportedly opened fire on passers-by in Sherot.

A number of Israelis have reportedly been taken captive by Hamas fighters.

Reuters reported that in Gaza, residents reported clashes along the separation fence with Israel. The roar of rockets was also heard.

With inputs from agencies

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