Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu shared images from a recent meeting with troops on the front lines in Gaza on Saturday.
“With our fighters in the Gaza Strip, on the front line,” Netanyahu wrote on X. “We are all ready.”
Netanyahu asks troops in a video published in the post, “Are you ready for the next stage?”
“The next stage is coming,” he continues, without specifying what stage of Israel’s battle with Hamas that is.
Israel has called up some 360,000 troops and amassed forces on the border with Gaza ahead of an anticipated ground assault to annihilate Hamas’ capabilities. The terror group launched a surprise attack on Israel on Oct. 7, rampaging through communities in southern Israel and killing as many as 1,300 Israelis in the worst attack in the country’s history.
Israel had given the entire 1.1 million population of the northern half of the Gaza Strip, which includes the enclave’s biggest settlement Gaza City, until Saturday morning to move south.
As that deadline approached it said it would guarantee the safety of Palestinians fleeing on two main roads until 4:00 pm local time. That deadline expired with no immediate announcement from either side of any change in the situation.