Haaretz adds their sources said an Israeli ground operation would result in "many civilian casualties, especially in the Palestinian refugee camps."
The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reports that both Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, who was in Cairo Thursday discussing Gaza with her Egyptian counterpart, warned Hamas that Israel was prepared to act to stop the Palestinian militants' ongoing rocket attacks.
"Hamas needs to understand that our aspiration to live in peace doesn't mean that Israel is going to take this kind of situation any longer," Livni said at the end of the meeting.
"Enough is enough. And while we are working with the pragmatic leaders, trying to change the situation on the ground in the West Bank, we cannot tolerate a situation in which Hamas continues to target Israel, Israel's citizens, and this situation is going to be changed."
Her sentiments were echoed by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who called on the people of Gaza to turn against Hamas, the Islamist political and military organization that holds de facto control of the area.
"I'm telling them now it may be the last minute. I'm telling them stop it, we are stronger," Olmert said in an interview with Arabic satellite television channel al-Arabiya.
"There will be more blood there. Who wants it? We don't want it."