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Israel's military begins calling up 16,000 reservists

Nov. 16, 2012 8:52 A.M. (Updated: Nov. 16, 2012 11:27 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (Reuters) -- Israel has started drafting 16,000 reserve troops, the military said on Friday, in a sign that violence could escalate further in the Gaza Strip.

Israel's two-day assault on Gaza has largely been from the air, but officials have said a ground incursion could be necessary to stem rocket fire into southern Israel.

Israel's army would be heavily dependent on reservists to fight any prolonged war. The military has received a green light to call in up to 30,000 reserve troops.

The Israeli assault has killed 19 Palestinians, and a Hamas rocket killed three Israelis on Thursday morning.

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