AAA  Jul. 8, 2014 9:02 AM ET
Israel army authorized to mobilize 40,000 troops
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Palestinians try to salvage what they can of their belongings from the rubble of a house destroyed by an overnight Israeli airstrike in Gaza City Tuesday, July 8, 2014. Israel launched what could be a long-term offensive against the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Tuesday, the military said, striking at least 50 sites in Gaza by air and sea and mobilizing troops for a possible ground invasion in order to quell rocket attacks on Israel. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
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(AP) — The Israeli government has given the military permission to mobilize up to 40,000 additional reservists as it steps up an offensive in the Gaza Strip.

Tuesday's decision came hours after Israel launched an offensive aimed at stopping weeks of heavy rocket fire out of Gaza.

The Israeli military said there were no immediate plans to call up the reservists, but the order was a contingency if the offensive needs to be expanded.

Israeli officials say the open-ended operation could go on for some time.

Associated Press
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