Gaza could face 'new operation' from Israeli military: army chief

Gaza could face 'new operation' from Israeli military: army chief
Aviv Kochavi's remarks came the same day an article was released citing a Hamas co-founder saying he felt a further Israeli campaign was unlikely.
2 min read
26 August, 2021
Aviv Kochavi is the Israeli army's top leader [GIL COHEN-MAGEN/AFP/Getty]

Gaza could again come under assault by the Israeli militaryarmy chief Aviv Kochavi, threatened on Wednesday.

"Perhaps we are preparing for a new operation in Gaza in the near future, and we do not and will not accept the violation of Israeli sovereignty, no matter who is behind it," Kochavi was quoted by Anadolu as saying.

The chief of the general staff's remarks appeared to be in reference to rockets and fire balloons being launched from Gaza and towards Israel.

Israel cited fire balloons, which Palestinians contend are to pressure Israel into relaxing the devastating blockade of Gaza, as justification for overnight bombing on Monday.

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Israeli forces claimed they attacked Gaza locations belonging to the area's rulers, Hamas.

The Palestinian balloons caused field fires, Israel's fire authority said.

Meanwhile, Israel is speeding up its preparations for potential action against Iran if Tehran fails to stop its nuclear efforts, according to Kochavi.

Part of the defence budget, agreed not long ago, is to be put to use in reinforcing Israel's offensive capabilities, Israeli outlet Walla reported.

The Israeli army head also explained they are making efforts to curb Tehran's regional sway, in reference to the Iranian navy and its operations.

Israel and Iran have been locked in battle in the Middle East's waters in recent years, with each being thought to have targeted the other's vessels as part of what has been dubbed a back-and-forth "shadow war".

Palestine shrinking; expanding Israel
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The last large-scale Israeli military campaign against besieged Gaza occurred in May, when a deadly 11-day bombing campaign killed 256 Palestinians, including dozens of children .

Rockets launched from Gaza by Hamas and others led to 13 deaths in Israel.

Kochavi's comments on Gaza come as Hamas co-founder Mahmoud Al-Zahar was cited by Anadolu in a Wednesday article as saying he felt it improbable another Israeli campaign against the Strip would occur.