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Israel Enforces 'Tactical Pause' In Gaza For Aid Delivery; 8 Israeli Soldiers Killed In Explosion In Rafah | Latest Updates

Meanwhile, in one of the deadliest attacks on the Israeli forces, eight soldiers were killed in the southern Gaza region on Saturday.

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Israel-Gaza War Photo: AP
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The Israeli military on Sunday announced a "tactical pause" in its offensive in the southern Gaza Strip to allow deliveries of increased quantities of humanitarian aid in the region.

The army said that the pause would begin at 8 am (05:00 GMT) and remain in place till 7 pm (16:00 GMT) in the Rafah area. It said that the pause was being coordinated with the United Nations and International Agencies

Meanwhile, in one of the deadliest attacks on the Israeli forces, eight soldiers were killed in the southern Gaza region on Saturday.

LATEST ON ISRAEL'S WAR ON GAZA

Israeli Troops Announce 'Tactical Pause' In Southern Gaza

The Israeli military announced a "tactical pause" on Sunday in its offensive in the southern Gaza Strip to facilitate the deliveries of increased amount of humanitarian aid.

The pause in Rafah will be in effect from 8 am to 7 pm (05:00 - 16:00 GMT), the military said, adding that the pauses would take place every day until further notice.

The pause is aimed at facilitating the movement of aid trucks to reach the nearby Israel-controlled Kerem Shalom crossing -- the main entry for incoming aid -- and travel safely to the Salah a-Din highway to deliver supplies to other parts of Gaza.

The pause was being coordinated with the UN and international aid agencies, the Israeli troops said. The crossing has been suffering since Israeli troops moved into Rafah earlier in May.

Israel's war on Gaza has led to a humanitarian crisis in Gaza, with the United Nations reporting widespread hunger and starvation of thousands of people.

According to figures from OCHA, the UN humanitarian office, the UN received an average of 68 trucks of aid a day from May 6 until June 6. This was down from the 168 per day figure in April and far below than the required number of 500 trucks a day.

COGAT, the Israeli military body that oversees aid distribution in Gaza, said that there are no restrictions on the entry of trucks. It said that over 8,600 trucks of all kinds, both aid and commercial, entered Gaza from all crossings between May 2 and June 13, at an average of 201 per day.

However, much of that aid is lying piled up at the crossing, not reaching its final destination. Shimon Freedman, COGAT spokesman, blamed the UN for the cargos being stacked up on Kerem Shalom's Gaza side.

He said the agencies have “fundamental logistical problems that they have not fixed,” especially a lack of trucks. However, the UN has denied such allegations.

8 Israeli Soldiers Killed In Southern Gaza

An explosion in southern Gaza killed eight Israeli soldiers, the military said on Saturday, making it the deadliest attack on Israeli forces in months.

The attack was likely to add fuel to new calls for ceasefire by the Israeli protestors. The explosion took place in Rafah city, which Israel has said is Hamas' last major stronghold.

Israel's Foreign Minister Israel Katz said, "They knew they might have to sacrifice their lives, but they did it so we could live in this country. I salute them and hug their families."

The incident took place just after 5 am in Rafah's Tal al-Sultan. Israeli military spokesman, Rear Adm Daniel Hagari said that it was caused either by an explosives placed by Hamas or by an anti-tank missile.

“We need to defeat the Rafah Brigade of Hamas and we are doing this with determination,” he said.

Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that he will not halt the war until he achieves the twin goals of destroying Hamas' military and governing capabilities.

“Today we paid another heartbreaking price in our just war for the defence of the homeland,” Netanyahu said, adding that, "With deep sorrow, in heavy mourning, I bow my head together with all the citizens of Israel and mourn the fall of our heroic warriors."

RECAP

Israel launched an air and ground invasion of Gaza in response to Hamas' unprecedented attack on Israel on October 7, which killed some 1,200 people and took over 250 hostages.

Meanwhile, the Israeli offensive has claimed the lives of over 37,000 Palestinians, as per local health officials.

(With agency inputs)

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