With Palestinian militant rockets continuing to rain down on Israel, Israel’s army is making no secret of the fact it is preparing to take tougher action.
Dozens of tanks and armoured personnel carriers have been moved close to the Gaza border to ready for a possible ground assault into the enclave.
Israel’s prime minister said he is determined to bring an end to the attacks.
“In the past 24 hours Israel has made it clear that it will not tolerate rocket and missile attack on civilians. I hope that Hamas and the other terror organisations in Gaza got the message. If not, Israel is prepared to take whatever action is necessary to defend our people,” said Benjamin Netanyahu.
For now Israel’s response has been limited to what it calls precision airstrikes by warplanes on strategic targets in and around Gaza city.
Israel’s army spokeswoman says they are prepared to push on if needed: “All the options are on the table, including the possibility of a ground operation, we have alerted some of our reserve units and we are considering our next steps currently. We are striking various targets from the air, targets of either caches of rockets, storage’s of rockets, underground tunnels used to store rockets and other targets,” said Lieutenant Colonel Avital Leibovich.
Israel has signalled it will not attack Gaza during a one-day visit by Egypt’s prime minister. But any move on the ground by Israel could push the conflict into all-out war.