Twenty-one Israeli soldiers lost their lives on Monday in a catastrophic explosion during a Hamas attack that led to the collapse of two buildings, trapping soldiers inside. The Israeli army confirmed the news on Tuesday morning. Meanwhile, in a significant development for Israel’s operations, the IDF completed the encirclement of the city of Khan Younis in Southern Gaza.
The buildings in question were in the process of being demolished by the IDF when Palestinian militants launched an RPG attack on a tank responsible for the security of the forces. The initial RPG attack was followed by a second explosion inside the buildings, likely caused by another RPG strike, resulting in their collapse. Additionally, there are speculations that the second explosion might be linked to mines placed by troops for demolition.
In a press conference held on Tuesday morning, Israeli Defense Forces spokesperson Daniel Haggari provided details about the tragic incident. He revealed that the troops were operating in an area near the southern borders of Gaza with Israel, with a mission to destroy Hamas facilities.
Furthermore, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) reported that they completed the encirclement of Khan Younis in southern Gaza, leading to significant losses for Hamas during their ground assault, as we’ve informed you. The IDF’s 98th Division, along with the 7th Armored Brigade and Givati Brigade, led an attack in western Khan Younis. The division’s Commando Brigade conducted operations deeper in the area, where battles and airstrikes against Hamas took place.
The battles that unfolded in Khan Younis are reported to be the fiercest that have occurred in the area so far. Additionally, tunnels, rockets, and other weapons were discovered in Khan Younis. The reserves of the Israeli Army from the Southern Brigade of the Gaza Division completed their operations on the outskirts of the city, focusing on destroying Hamas’s tunnels and infrastructure.