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Israel eases security restrictions near Gaza

Jerusalem, June 20 The Israeli Home Front Command has announced the lifting of security restrictions in numerous communities near the Gaza Strip, marking a significant easing of measures since the Hamas attack on October 7, 2023.

The new guidelines, which apply to the “Gaza Envelope” area that extends up to 7 km from the Gaza border, exclude 25 communities, such as Sderot and Kerem Shalom, that are closer to the border.

According to a statement from the military, the decision follows an extensive review by Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and Chief of the General Staff Herzi Halevi, Xinhua news agency reported.

Under these revised guidelines, outdoor educational activities can resume without restrictions, gatherings of up to 1,000 people are allowed, and workplaces and essential economic activities can take place without restrictions.

The adjustments to the Home Front Command’s defensive protocols are aimed at easing restrictions on civilian life through the current operational assessment to revive agriculture, the economy and education, the military said in a statement.

The move comes after an eight-and-a-half-month conflict between Israel and Hamas, in which Israeli operations resulted in extensive damage to infrastructure and loss of life in Gaza, especially among civilians.

Israeli authorities claim that Hamas’s militant infrastructure has been significantly dismantled during the conflict.

Israel launched the military campaign in response to a surprise attack by Hamas on southern Israeli communities, which left around 1,200 casualties.

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