Hagari said that Israeli forces had been preparing for the overnight operation “for some time” and that it was executed based on highly sensitive intelligence.
The IDF spokesman described how special forces breached a building “in the heart of Rafah” before locating Har and Marman on the second floor, where they were being held by armed Hamas militants.
A battle ensued, he said, with “heavy exchanges of fire at several locations simultaneously.” Around the same time, he said, aerial fire was deployed in the area by the Israeli air force and Southern Command.
In a separate statement, the IDF, the Israeli Security Agency and Israel Police said both Har and Marman were in good medical condition and had been transferred for examination at the Sheba Tel-HaShomer Medical Center in Ramat Gan near Tel Aviv.
Hospital officials confirmed to NBC News that the two men were receiving care there, while a photo released by Israeli officials showed them reuniting with loved ones at the medical facility.
“Fernando and Luis — Welcome back home,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement Monday morning.
Hamas, meanwhile, condemned Israel’s operations in Rafah.
Israel’s offensive in Gaza has so far seen more than 28,000 people killed and and more than 67,700 injured, with thousands more missing and presumed dead, according to Palestinian health authorities.
And in recent days, concerns have mounted over Israel’s plans to launch a ground assault on Rafah, where more than half of Gaza’s roughly 2.3 million people have sought shelter after the Israeli military previously declared the city bordering Egypt a safe zone.
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