Over 700 dead, 2300 injured in ‘worst massacre’ by Hamas: Israeli defence force
IDF also believed that the number of casualties could increase.
As many as 2,300 people have sustained injuries and more than 700 have died in the "worst massacre of Israeli civilians" by Hamas, Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said.
In a major escalation on October 7 (Saturday), Hamas launched a "surprise attack" on Israel, firing a barrage of rockets into the southern and central parts of the country.
"What we witnessed two days ago is the worst massacre of Israeli civilians in Israel's history...This is something that we have never experienced before and the horrors that we have witnessed are almost hard to describe in words...," Israel Defence Forces (IDF) spokesperson Major Libby Weiss said here on Monday night
In an update, Lieutenant Colonel (Reserves) Jonathan Conricus said that as many as 2,300 people have sustained injuries and more than 700 have died. He also believed that the number of casualties could increase.
IDF spokesperson Major Weiss' remarks came during a virtual presser held on Monday night (IST) that was also attended by Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Eli Cohen and Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Lior Haiat.
She also lashed out at Iran for being a "supporter of Hamas" and playing a role in the actions of Hamas.
"We know historically Iran has been a very strong supporter of Hamas...Naturally, we do believe that Iran plays a role in the actions Hamas is carrying out...," she added.
On the release of hostages, Major Weiss said that much can't be elaborated on the plans of IDF adding that they are committed to bringing hostages home.
"...For obvious reasons, we can't at this stage elaborate too much about IDF plans or anything along those lines...We are committed & dedicated to bringing the hostages home regardless of what country they came from...," said Major Weiss.
Earlier in an ANI interview, Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Lior Haiat also reiterated the allegation that Iran is the main financer of the terror organisations in the Middle East.
According to LTC (Res.) Conricus, "dozens of Israelis" have been held in captivity in Gaza under Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
He also said that civilians, women, the elderly, infants and even the disabled have been taken hostage. They were taken back to Gaza and paraded on the streets.
On the hostage issue, Israel's Foreign Minister Cohen said, "I want to assure you that we will defeat the devil because we have no other choice. There are many Israelis and others from different nationalities who have been held hostage. We are committed to bringing them back in the spirit of mutual responsibility. We demand the Hamas not to harm any of the hostages..."
As part of its retaliation against Hamas, Israel has mobilised 3,00,000 troops in the last 48 hours. Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari informed about the mobilisation and said the IDF "has never mobilized so many reservists so quickly -- 300,000 reservists in 48 hours."
This is the largest mobilisation since the 1973 Yom Kippur War when Israel called up 400,000 reservists, Times of Israel reported.
In another development, the Israeli military has also deployed troops against a suspected infiltration from Lebanon.
Meanwhile, the IDF continued to carry out airstrikes, with the military saying it was hitting targets belonging to the Hamas terror group. (ANI)