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Jan 11, 2009 8:31 | Updated Jan 12, 2009 3:20
Army creating 'security zone' in Gaza
By YAAKOV KATZ
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Israel dispatched reserve units to the Gaza Strip on Sunday as the IDF was said to be carving out a "security zone" along the border, which it would retain even after an end to the fighting and use to conduct routine patrols aimed at halting rocket attacks against the South.
IDF moves to outskirts of Gaza City
Tunnels remain high on IDF agenda.
Senior defense officials told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that while diplomatic efforts were picking up speed, Israel was likely to "expand" the operations in Gaza before agreeing to a withdrawal and cessation of operations against Hamas.
On Sunday, IDF tanks and infantry units pushed deeper into Gaza City, encountering fierce Hamas resistance and killing, according to the military, close to 50 Hamas operatives. Earlier in the day, the IAF bombed the home of Ahmed Ja'abri, commander of the Hamas military wing. Ja'abri was not believed to be home at the time.
The IDF would not say whether the insertion of the reserve forces constituted the much-anticipated "third phase" of Operation Cast Lead, which is believed to be either a deeper incursion into Gaza City or an expansion of operations in other parts of Gaza including in the south.