The Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak stated on Monday that he ordered the Israeli army to start preparing for the wide scale offensive against the Gaza Strip.
Barak said that this possible attack comes to stop the home-made shells fired by the Palestinian resistance at the nearby Israeli towns.

He told the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Security Committee, that his troops are attacking the Palestinian coastal region ‘day and night, with a high chance for those attacks to expand’

In his statement to this parliamentary committee Barak said that his troops have killed in the past several weeks 61 Palestinians and 200 Palestinians during the ongoing attacks on the coastal region in the past four months.

Meanwhile scores of residents of the Israeli town of Sderot, which is mostly targeted by the Palestinian home made shells fired from Gaza, protested today in the city of Jerusalem in front of the Israeli Parliament and demanded their government to do smoothing about the home-made shells.

Lat week, the firing of home-made shells fired from Gaza had resulted in the injury of four Israelis one was critical. While Israeli army attacks in teh same period kiled 20 Palestinians in Gaza.

In September 2007 the Israeli government announced the Gaza strip as a ‘Hostile Entity’, paving the road for a dramatic escalation of attacks. In January 2008 the Israeli military closed all entrances and exits of the Gaza Strip, and reduced fuel, water, food and medicine supplies. Commentators say that locking 1.5 million Palestinians in this small area, lacking those basic supplies is pushing the region into a very critical humanitarian cresses.

Over one hundred Palestinian patients have died as a result of this tight closure which started in June 2007, and tightened in January, due to lack of medical supplies, ability to travel for medical treatement and lack of parts of medical intruments and devices.