10 March 2012
Updated Messages Regarding the Events in the South
The Government's guiding principle is that whoever plans attacks against Israelis, and whoever carries them out, will be hit -preferably before he has a chance to carry out his plans.
1. The 'Popular Resistance Committees' (PRC) terrorist group is attempting to launch terror attacks against Israel from the Sinai, similar to the attack last August in which eight Israelis were murdered. Israel's actions including the targeted assassination of the PRC's leader in Gaza, and defensive measures along the southern border including the closure of roads, are meant to prevent such an attack.
2. The targeted action was also intended to prevent an attempt to stir up tension between Israel and Egypt and sow instability in the region.
3. Over the past 24 hours Palestinian terrorist groups have fired dozens of rockets at Israeli population centers in the South, endangering one million men, women and children (15% of the Israeli population), injuring civilians and disrupting normal life. This follows the non-stop firing of rockets and missiles at Israeli civilians over the past several months. No country in the world could accept such a situation.
4. Israel will continue to defend its citizens wherever they may be. Israel is not interested in an escalation, but will continue to act to prevent rocket and terror attacks and to undermine the terrorist infrastructure in Gaza.
5. The current situation will likely last for several days. It is important to continue to follow the instructions of the Home Front Command, the security forces, and local municipalities.
6. The resilience of our citizens and of the heads of the local municipalities is Israel's most important source of strength.
7. Israel considers Hamas responsible for all of the terrorist activity in Gaza, and demands that it carry out its responsibility.
8. Despite the terrorist organizations' strategy of operating from within the heart of a civilian population, the IDF acts in a focused manner in order to strike at the terrorists while minimizing collateral damage.
9. Hamas and other terrorist organizations are carrying out two-fold war crimes - using Palestinian civilians as human shields in order to attack Israeli civilians.
10. Terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip are constantly attempting to carry out attacks against Israeli civilians-firing rockets at Israeli population centers, shooting at farmers working their fields near the Israel-Gaza border, attempting to kidnap Israeli civilians and soldiers and more.
11. In parallel, these organizations are expending great resources in systematic attempts to smuggle weapons from the Sinai and the sea, rather than investing those resources in improving the welfare of Gaza's residents.
12. The terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip serve as a forward position for Iran, which arms, funds and directs them. Iran is the world's greatest exporter of terrorism, endangering peace in the region and throughout the world. This is another reason that Iran must be prevented from acquiring nuclear weapons.
13. The Government will continue to invest in developing and expanding the Iron Dome system, which is succeeding beyond all expectations as demonstrated once again over the weekend. Nevertheless, it is important to emphasize that the system will never achieve a 100% success rate, and therefore it is important to continue to follow all safety guidelines. The Government will continue to invest extensive resources in homeland defense and in numerous other measures and means to provide security for its citizens.
14. The Government is working to quickly complete the security fence on the Israeli-Egyptian border, which is intended both to prevent terror attacks from the Sinai and the wave of infiltrators looking to enter Israel.