Israel has agreed to postpone its invasion of the Gaza Strip to allow the US to deploy missile defences to the region, according to the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, Anadolu Agency reports.
The report said Israel has, for now, accepted a US request to position its air defences before the anticipated ground operation, citing American and Israeli officials.
US officials convinced Israel to delay the invasion until the air-defence systems can be deployed, potentially by later this week, according to the newspaper.
The report said the Pentagon is working urgently to send nearly 12 air-defence systems to locations where US troops are stationed, including Iraq, Syria, Kuwait, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, to shield them from missiles and rockets.
In addition to military considerations, Israel is considering plans to deliver humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza and diplomatic efforts to secure the release of more hostages held by Hamas, according to officials.
The report said US military officials expressed significant concern for the safety of American soldiers, believing that various militant groups may target American forces, once the ground incursion commences.
Source : MEMO