Israel will eliminate the four remaining Hamas battalions in Rafah, but will not necessarily eliminate every Hamas fighter in the southern Gazan city, government spokesperson David Mencer said in a press briefing.

He added that Israel has asked Egypt, which shares a border with Gaza, to open it up to Gazan civilians who wish the flee the seven-month Israel-Gaza war, but the request has been declined.

(Reporting by Maytaal Angel; Editing by Andrew Heavens)