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TEL AVIV- Israel’s government believes Hamas will fire on Tel Aviv in the current round of unrest, senior security sources said Tuesday, according to reports. Ministers have given the army permission to mobilize up to 40,000 additional reservists as it steps up an offensive in the Gaza Strip, the sources told The Associated Press and local media.

The reports came hours after Israel launched an offensive aimed at stopping weeks of heavy rocket fire out of Gaza. Government spokesman Mark Regev told NBC News said there were plans to call up more reservists but declined to confirm the exact number. Defense minister Moshe Yaalon announced a special state of emergency in southern Israel, telling The Associated Press: "We will not tolerate rocket fire on Israel cities, and we are preparing to expand the operation with everything at our disposal to strike Hamas."



- Paul Goldman

Baruch Ben-Chorin in London, and The Associated Press, contributed to this report.