In the next stage and certainly the most difficult and most dangerous one enters the ground operation of the Israeli forces in Gaza. The Israeli army has announced that the encirclement operation of its city has been completed Gaza and now special forces have begun operations within the main urban fabric.

The primary concern of the Israelis is the neutralization of its tunnels Hamas, as military officials reported. An extremely complex task, as the labyrinthine network of tunnels that Hamas has created has not been mapped to size and its size and total cost throughout the territory of the Gaza Strip is unknown.

“Our soldiers have completed the encirclement of Gaza City, the center of the terrorist organization Hamas,” Israeli military spokesman Daniel Hagari said.

The third phase of the business begins

Now, the IDF operation begins the third phase of the plan: The neutralization of the underground pockets of Hamas.

The Israeli Corps of Engineers is now working to locate and neutralize underground infrastructure, explosives and other threats to allow the IDF to move freely in the area, Hagari said.

Threats for one hundred and two dead from Hamas

The armed wing of Hamas, for its part, warned that Gaza would prove to be a “disaster” for Israel and its soldiers would leave the enclave “in black bags”, i.e. dead. According to figures released by the IDF so far, 20 Israeli soldiers have lost their lives in the fighting in Gaza.

“Gaza will be Israel’s calamity,” Brigades spokesman Ezzedine Al-Qassam said in an audio message carried by Hamas media. Addressing the Israelis, he added that they should expect the return of “more of (their) soldiers in black bags.”

Gallant: We have unique solutions for tunnels

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said the military has “unique solutions” to demolish Hamas’ vast network of tunnels under the Gaza Strip.

“We have unique solutions to reach all the tunnels and dismantle them underground. We are ready to do it,” Gallant stressed to the troops of the elite Yahalom unit.

“We will get everywhere and then the terrorists will have two choices: either die in the tunnel or get out. And there they either die from the fire of our forces or surrender unconditionally,” he says. “There is no third option, these are the only options and this is how we operate,” he adds.