The Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee unanimously authorized on Thursday Defense Minister Ehud Barak's request to enlist reservists and declare a "special status" for towns within 40 km from Gaza.

The IDF will issue "order nine," which is an irregular order in cases of emergency for reservists to immediately report to duty. The committee did not release the number of reservists that will be called.

"The residents of the south are in the real line of fire, and only their strength will allow the IDF to meet its capabilities," Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chairman Ronnie Bar-On (Kadima) said. "Israel is passing on a clear message to terrorist organizations in Gaza that disrupting life in the South will not continue."

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