Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told a group of Israeli soldiers on Tuesday that the strikes Israel launched on Gaza on Monday were the hardest yet.
“We are striking our enemies with tremendous force,” Netanyahu said, according to his office. “Yesterday, during our attacks in Gaza, we dealt the enemy the hardest blow he has suffered in a single day.”
On Tuesday, the Palestinian Health Ministry said 704 Palestinians were killed during Israeli strikes from Monday into Tuesday, the highest death toll in a 24-hour period since the onslaught began.
Netanyahu claimed the strikes killed “many dozens of terrorists, possibly many more than that, and at this very moment, we are finding out the exact extent of the damage.”
The Palestinian Health Ministry said that since October 7, at least 5,791 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, including 2,360 children.
Netanyahu also signaled that Israel will soon invade Gaza, although it’s unclear when the operation will begin. “We are facing the next stage [of the operation], it is on its way. You know it, you are part of it, you are part of the spearhead,” Netanyahu told the soldiers.
“I have enormous appreciation for what you know how to do, your fighting spirit, and your willingness to save our country from these animals, and I am sure we will succeed in this. We have only one task – to crush Hamas, crush it. We won’t stop until we get it done,” the Israeli leader added.