During the past four days, the IDF has conducted wide scale activity in accordance with the directive of the political echelon, and has encircled the main Palestinian cities, in an effort to prevent the exit of terror against Israeli citizens, and following efforts that have gone over the past year. This activity is taking place mainly because the Palestinian Authority and its security forces are not fulfilling the agreements and are not imposing laws and order in accordance with the agreements.
The activity is wide scale in all the West Bank citiies.
The IDF has encircled Jenin, out of which dozens of cases of terror activity have originated, and suicide bombers, and dozens others were thwarted by us. Acts of terror from Jenin; Afula, Haifa, Binyamina, Hadera and other places.
The IDF is also encircling Tul Karem from where dozens of cases of terror activity have originated. Four Israeli civilians have been killed and dozens wounded. Only two weeks ago was an Israeli civilian murdered on the road south of the city.
The IDF is encircling Nablus with armor and infantry forces. From within the city, a large number of terror attacks in the Jordan valley have originated – four Israelis have been murdered along the Jordan valley roads.
The IDF is encircling Kalkiliya: During the past frew weeks there have been at least twenty terror attacks, and three Israelis were murdered, among them an Israeli Arab who was murdered near the village of Tsofin. The encirclement was tightened in order to prevent additional terror attacks.
Following the renewal of the shooting and the mortar bombs from Beit Jala toward the Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo, we entered Beit Jala once again in order to separate between Gilo and Beit Jala, and we have also widened our activity to Behtlehem – at present we are in the north of the city and also in the south, in order to prevent the gunfire.
In the past day, contrary to the agreements, the fire has also been renewed in Hebron.
All our activity is done for the sake of self defense, because the Palestinian Authority is not fulfilling its role to prevent terrorism. In the past four days, paratrooper, infantry, armor, engineering, border police, the Israel Air Force and other forces have been acting assertively and determinedly, and have hit 20 Hamas, Tanzim and Popular Front members, some of which have been arrested by us. During the activity and prior to it, we notified the Palestinian Authority forces that we had no intention to harm them – they should return to their positions and homes, so not to be hit. All we want is to prevent terror attacks against Israeli citizens.
During the activity, 6 IDF soldiers were wounded – two in the Jenin area, two in the Bethlehem area – one of which is seriously wounded, and two in the Tul Karem area. All the others are lightly wounded.
The activity is based on our right to self defense, in the absence of Palestinian preventive action, and will continue as long as we are instructed by the political echelon.
Throughout the entire year the IDF operates to decrease terror against Israelis in the West Bank and inside the State of Israel, and this is what we are doing at present.
The Palestinian Authority security forces did not show resistance. The resistance came mainly from Popular Front, Hamas and Tanzim forces. In comparison with previous operations, the resistance was fiercer. The resistance manifested itself among others in blocking the entrances to the cities and armed gunmen in positions, and mainly passive gunfire by snipers from afar.
Only several tank shells were fired by us, because we know that this can hit the innocent, something we are trying to prevent – the activity is aimed mainly against the terrorists. Our forces will remain as long as is needed according to the decision of the political echelon.
We will do all in our power to limit the scope of terror within the Palestinian Authority – when they assume responsibility and impose the law on their population, mainly on the terror organizations who operate against the agreements.
We will exit from A areas as we left Abu Sneina and Hart a’sheikh in Hebron.