Israel pushes deeper into Gaza and frees Hamas captive; Netanyahu rejects calls for cease-fire


October 31, 2023

Fatima Shbair, Associated Press

Palestinians mourn relatives killed in the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip in Rafah, Monday, Oct 30, 2023.

KHAN YOUNIS, Gaza Strip - Israeli ground forces pushed deeper into Gaza on Monday, advancing in tanks and other armored vehicles on the territory's main city and freeing a soldier held captive by Hamas militants. The Israeli prime minister rejected calls for a cease-fire as airstrikes landed near hospitals where thousands of Palestinians are sheltering beside the wounded.

The military said a soldier captured during Hamas' brutal Oct. 7 incursion was rescued in Gaza - the first rescue since the weekslong war began. Military officials provided few details but said in a statement that Pvt. Ori Megidish, 19, was ''doing well'' and had met with her family.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed her home, saying the ''achievement'' by Israel's security forces ''illustrates our commitment to free all the hostages.''


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