Netanyahu dissolves Israeli war cabinet after resignations

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Tel Aviv, June 17 (IANS/DPA) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dissolved his war cabinet on Monday, a spokeswoman for the Prime Minister confirmed.

The key political decision-making body for how the war in Gaza was being conducted was dissolved just more than a week after the withdrawal of influential Opposition leader Benny Gantz.

Israeli media had earlier leaked the news about the disbanding of the cabinet, which was formed after the Hamas terrorist attacks of October 7. A spokeswoman for Netanyahu confirmed the news on Monday.

Government sources said that Netanyahu would discuss critical decisions regarding the conflict in smaller forums in future.

The cabinet had been formed in an attempt to demonstrate political unity after the Hamas attack.

Netanyahu leads a government composed of far-right and religious parties, but the war cabinet contained Gantz, a key opposition figure.

Last week, Gantz -- a former general and Defence Minister -- announced his withdrawal due to differences of opinion concerning the Gaza war and what would happen to Gaza after the war is over.

An observer member of the cabinet, Gadi Eisenkot, also withdrew, leading to even greater expectations that the cabinet would be dissolved.

Investigations continue into the deaths of eight Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers.

The Israeli army said on Monday that it believes an anti-tank missile was used in an attack on an Israeli armoured vehicle in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip which killed eight soldiers on Saturday, according to Israeli media.

The incident is one of the most serious for the IDF since the start of the war more than eight months ago.

Initial findings showed that a door of the Namer armoured personnel carrier was open contrary to instructions, the newspaper Israel Hayom wrote on Monday.

All of the vehicle's occupants were killed instantly when the rocket hit the vehicle. The incident is still being investigated.