Thousands of Israeli soldiers are being shifted out of the Gaza Strip, as the country’s military now continues to be bear down on the main city in the southern half of the region.
The movement is being considered Israel’s first significant troop drawdown since it declared war on the Palestinian-affiliated Hamas militant group and a possible signal that fighting is being scaled back in some areas of Gaza, particularly in the northern half, where Israel says it is close to achieving operational control.
Israel has been under pressure from its major ally the United States to move to a lower-intensity fighting, to slow the number of civilian casualties.
Word of the drawdown follows the Biden administration bypassed Congress for the second time in recent weeks to approve an emergency weapons sale to Israel, according to the Associated Press.
Hamas, which launched a terror attack on Israel Oct. 7, 2023, sparking the war, has ruled Gaza for 16 years.
Israel has said its goal is to dismantle Hamas.