Israel Paying Heavy Price, But Has No Choice: Netanyahu As War With Hamas Rages On

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on Sunday that the Gaza conflict was exacting a “very heavy price” as the death toll from combat with Hamas rose, news agency AFP reported. “This is a difficult morning, following a very difficult day of fighting in Gaza,” he remarked after the army confirmed 14 military personnel had died in the Palestinian region since Friday. “The war is exacting a very heavy price but we have no choice but to keep fighting,” he added in a statement.

“We are continuing with full force until the end, until victory, until we achieve all of our goals: the destruction of Hamas, the return of our hostages, and ensuring that Gaza will never again constitute a threat to the State of Israel,” he was quoted by AFP in its report.

He added: “Let it be clear: This will be a long war… (until) Hamas is eliminated and we restore security in both the north and the south.”

Later that day, the 154th death in the military was announced: tank commander Maj Aryeh Rein.

In another statement, the military stated it has killed more than 8,000 Palestinian combatants so far in its campaign, according to Reuters.

On October 7, Hamas terrorists invaded from Gaza into southern Israel, murdering 1,200 people and seizing around 240 prisoners.

Israel insists on taking precautions to minimise civilian fatalities and criticises Hamas for settling in heavily populated areas.

During a phone discussion with Netanyahu on Saturday, US President Joe Biden underlined the “critical need” to preserve civilian life, according to the White House.

Biden informed reporters that he did not request a cease-fire in his phone conversation. Both guys feel that such an action would favour Hamas.

The UN Security Council passed a resolution requesting large-scale relief delivery to Gaza on Friday, but it, too, stopped short of asking for a truce between the two warring parties.

Talks in Egypt earlier this week aimed at securing a new truce between Israel and Hamas have so far yielded no results.

According to a Palestinian official acquainted with the ceasefire talks, Egypt proposed a new three-stage proposal that would begin with a two-week humanitarian truce – which could be extended – during which Hamas would release 40 hostages and Israel would release 120 Palestinian detainees, BBC reported.