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Day 19: Invasion plans reportedly moves forward as Israel continues targeted strikes in Gaza

Humanitarian aid trucks from Qatar and Turkey enter southern Gaza Strip

Israeli soldiers look at a fire caused by a rocket launched from the Gaza Strip at a forest near the border with the Gaza Strip, Oct. 24, 2023. (Photo: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Israel Defense Forces continue planning for a ground campaign into Gaza.

While the political leadership has not yet released a timeline for beginning the operation, most of Israel's cabinet members have expressed support for an invasion. The IDF leadership has also stated that a ground campaign would be necessary to deal with extensive “terror tunnel” network built by Hamas under Gaza City.

One of the IDF units preparing to enter Gaza is the Golani Brigade.

While traditionally stationed in the northern region of the country, hence their name, the Golani Brigade 13th and 51st battalions were some of the first responders on Saturday morning, Oct. 7, when the Hamas invasion began. Unfortunately, the Golani Brigade suffered many losses.

“The heroism of the fallen soldiers of the 13th Battalion accompanies us in every step we take,” Lt-Col. Tomer Greenberg, commander of the 13th Battalion of the Golani Brigade, told Israeli media.

“We are preparing for a ground incursion into the Gaza Strip, with grueling training and individual and group adaptations that will eventually prepare us to fight and win,” he added.

Lt.-Col. Meir Ohayon, commander of the 51st Battalion said, “At that time of testing, the battalion's fighters displayed extraordinary courage and fighting spirit.”

Ohayon said the battalion is using “every minute” available for training in order to be prepared for the invasion.

“There will be [ground] operations, and when it comes, we will win,” Ohayon stated.

Meanwhile, the IDF announced that hundreds of Hamas targets were hit in the Gaza Strip in the past day.

The IDF struck Hamas and other terror infrastructure, including terror tunnels, military headquarters, weapons warehouses, mortar launchers and anti-tank missile launchers.

Overnight the IDF struck Hamas’ emergency operations apparatus, including war rooms, infrastructure and military headquarters. The Hamas unit was responsible for setting up blockades in order to prevent Gaza civilians from evacuating to the southern Gaza Strip, as the IDF warned and instructed.

This is in addition to the destruction of compounds and military headquarters of Hamas' security apparatus, which is responsible for governing the terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip, and the arrest and imprisonment of Hamas opponents.

The Israel Navy also struck and killed a group of Hamas terrorists attempting to infiltrate Israel by sea near Kibbutz Zikim this morning.

Despite the large number of targeted strikes in the Gaza Strip, mostly meant to prepare the area for ground invasion, rocket attacks against Israel resumed overnight and into the morning.

Sirens sounded in Ashkelon and the Gaza Envelope overnight, and as recently as 9 a.m.

No injuries were reported at the time of publication.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) announced that 8 humanitarian aid trucks had been allowed into the southern Gaza Strip through the Rafah Border Crossing with Egypt.

Both Qatar and Turkey have sent several tons of humanitarian aid to Gaza, mostly food and some medical supplies.

----- Update----- 10:01 a.m.

As the story went to publication, the IDF announced the killing of Tayseer Mubasher, commander of the northern Khan Yunis battalion of Hamas. He is one of the most senior military commanders killed during Operation Iron Swords.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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