The recent announcement by Israel’s military of withdrawing thousands of soldiers from the south, including Khan Younis city, signals a change in strategy after months of relentless air and ground attacks.

Despite the partial withdrawal from the southern Gaza, one brigade, which typically makes up of a few thousands soldiers, will remain in the area, according to Israeli army.

Israel has long planned to invade the southern Gaza city of Rafah, arguing that it is necessary to eliminate Hamas. It remains uncertain whether the partial withdrawal would postpone the invasion, as some reports suggest that this may be a new Israeli strategy preceding an attack on Rafah.

Mediators resumed ceasefire talks in Cairo, Egypt, with key stakeholders such as Qatar’s prime minister and the CIA chief present. However, the high-level Israeli officials were absent from these discussions.

In Tel Aviv, tens of thousands of Israeli protesters have taken to the streets, demanding Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s resignation and urging for a negotiated deal to secure the release of Israeli captives held by Hamas in Gaza. The protest comes as the Israeli onslaught on Gaza enters a seventh month, in which Isreal has killed at least 33,175 Palestinians, mostly women and children, and wounded 75,886.

The protests took place across various cities besides the focal point of Tel Aviv. An estimated 100,000 people gathered at Democracy Square, historically known for its role in mass demonstrations against judicial reforms.

Chanting slogans demanding “elections now” and the resignation of Netanyahu, the protesters voiced their frustration with the government’s handling of both domestic and international affairs, particularly regarding the ongoing war on Gaza.

Clashes erupted between demonstrators and police in Tel Aviv, resulting in the arrest of at least one protester, according to Israeli media reports.