The IDF will continue fighting Hamas and other terror groups in Gaza until long-term quiet in Israel is restored. Israel will not negotiate under fire.
“Operation Protective Edge is continuing,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated on Sunday morning at the weekly Cabinet meeting.
“At no stage did we declare its conclusion,” the Israeli leader said. “The operation will continue until its goal is met – the restoration of a quiet for a long period. I said at the outset of and throughout the operation that it would take time and patience. Israel will not negotiate under fire and Israel will continue to take all action in order to change the current reality and bring quiet to all of its citizens. We will stand together, united and determined, until we complete the work.”
Describing events leading to the end of the ceasefire on Friday, following the failed negotiations in Cairo, the ministry of Foreign Affairs said that on Friday, Israel had agreed to Egypt’s call to extend the 72-hour ceasefire.
“Shortly after 4 a.m., with the ceasefire still in effect, two rockets struck in open areas near the Eshkol Regional Council. At 8:01, two rockets were fired towards Ashkelon, marking the renewal of rocket fire from Gaza, as Hamas refused to extend the 72-hour ceasefire.
“By 10 a.m., over 18 rockets were fired from Gaza at Israel; two were intercepted over Ashkelon, 14 hit open areas and two landed in Gaza. At 10:30 rockets were fired at Sderot.”
After two and a half hours of rocket fire from Gaza, Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon ordered the IDF to respond with force.
Two people were wounded in Sha’ar Hanegev on Friday when a rocket exploded near a residential building. A home in Sderot was also struck by a rocket. A total of 61 rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza, 13 of them exploding inside Gaza.
Since the start of Operation Protective Edge on July 8, at least 3,450 rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza.
Written by: United with Israel Staff
(With files from the Government Press Office)