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Military at the Israel-Gaza border, IDF spokesman



(4 Jan 2009) SHOTLIST
1. Rising smoke on horizon
2. Wide of Gaza border area
3. Explosion at building
4. Various of Israeli trucks and tanks
5. Rising smoke on horizon
6. Various of helicopters in the sky
7. Tracking shot of Israeli armed vehicles on flatbed trucks
8. Israeli army vehicles in the field
9. SOUNDBITE: (Hebrew) General Avi Benayah, Chief spokesman, Israel Defence Forces (IDF):
“We are operating with our forces according to plan. Our target is the terrorists of Hamas, and its military wing. The citizens of Gaza are not our target. But we want to explain that anyone who provides a hiding place for terrorists, or keeps them in his house, they are terrorists too. We try to avoid hurting innocent people, but Hamas is responsible for what is going on, as they use the women and the children as protective barriers.”
10. Benayah walks away
11. Tracking shot of Israeli armed vehicles on flatbed trucks
STORYLINE:
The sun went down on Sunday night in Gaza, as the eighth day of an intensive Israeli offensive on the area drew to a close.
Sunday was also the first full day of a ground assault by Israeli forces, who went in on Saturday night.
At the Gaza-Israel border, Israeli tanks and equipment were lined up on the side of the road and in open areas.
Troops and tanks cut swaths through the Gaza Strip on Sunday, cutting the coastal territory into two and surrounding Gaza City, its biggest city, as the new phase of the offensive against Hamas militants gained momentum.
The Israeli military used firepower from tanks, artillery and aircraft to protect the advancing soldiers, and Gaza officials said at least 31 civilians were killed in the onslaught.
The military said troops killed several dozen militants, but Gaza officials could confirm only four dead – in part because rescue teams could not reach the battle zones.
One Israeli soldier was killed.
The ground operation is the second phase in an offensive that began as a weeklong aerial onslaught aimed at halting Hamas rocket fire.
The new deaths brought the death toll in the Gaza Strip to more than 500 since December 27. Palestinian and U.N. officials said at least 100 civilians are among the dead.
The offensive focused on northern Gaza, where most of the rockets are fired into Israel, but at least one incursion was reported in the southern part of the strip.
Hundreds of rockets have hit Israel since the offensive began, and four Israelis have been killed.

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