‘For Your Own Safety:’ Israel Warns Gaza Residents To Evacuate Ahead Of Sweeping Ground Invasion

(Photo by IBRAHIM HAMS/AFP via Getty Images)

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Jake Smith Contributor
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The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) are calling for residents of the Gaza Strip to immediately evacuate and move southbound as they prepare for a potential sweeping ground invasion.

IDF began launching airstrikes on the Gaza Strip this week in a counteroffensive effort against Hamas, which carried out mass terrorist attacks starting on Saturday that resulted in the deaths of over 1,300 Israelis and the kidnapping of hundreds more. The IDF is now issuing another evacuation order for Gaza civilians ahead of a likely invasion that will involve troops and tanks on the ground, as Hamas’ nerve center is located in tunnels deep under the city. (RELATED: ‘On The Swords Edge’: Israel Preps For Even ‘Bigger’ Attacks From Hezbollah)

“The IDF calls for the evacuation of all civilians of Gaza City from their homes southwards,” IDF said in a statement on Friday. “The Hamas terrorist organization waged a war against the State of Israel and Gaza City is an area where military operations take place. This evacuation is for your own safety.”

“Hamas terrorists are hiding in Gaza City inside tunnels underneath houses and inside buildings populated with innocent Gazan civilians,” the IDF said. “In the following days, the IDF will continue to operate significantly in Gaza City and make extensive efforts to avoid harming civilians.”

Following the evacuation orders, Hamas told Gaza residents not to leave their homes and ignore the IDF’s safety instructions, according to the IDF and CNN. Hamas regularly uses civilians as human shields, and “embeds” itself in hospitals, homes and schools to deter attacks.

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