Israeli prime minister asks Palestinians to leave Gaza, saying army to turn Hamas sites ‘into rubble’

Israeli soldiers

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked Palestinians to leave the Gaza Strip on Saturday and said the army will turn Hamas sites “into rubble.”

“We will turn all the places in which Hamas is based … all the places Hamas is hiding in, acting from into rubble,” Netanyahu said in a televised address to the nation.

He called on Palestinians in the area to “leave now.”

“This war will take time, it will be difficult. Challenging days are ahead of us,” he said.

Hamas launched Operation Al Aqsa Flood on Saturday. It said the surprise attack was in response to the storming of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and increased settler violence. It said it fired rockets and captured many Israelis.

In turn, the Israeli army initiated Operation Swords of Iron against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Netanyahu said we are "at war."

At least 232 Palestinians have been killed in the attacks, according to medical sources in Gaza, while the Israeli death toll climbed to 300.
More than 3,000 rockets have been launched by Hamas toward Israel since Saturday morning, according to the Israeli army.

It acknowledged that soldiers had been taken hostage into Gaza, and confirmed that more than 1,000 Israelis were injured, in a statement on X.

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