We didn’t initiate this conflict. We would like it to end. However, it is our moral commitment to protect Israeli civilians and put an end to Hamas aggression and terror
(Communicated by the Deputy Foreign Minister’s Bureau)
Deputy Foreign Minister Tzachi Hanegbi briefed foreign ambassadors to Israel this afternoon (Thursday, 10 July 2014) at Kfar Hamaccabiah Hotel in Ramat Gan following the commencement of Operation Protective Edge in Gaza.
In the briefing, DFM Hanegbi stated that "It is unacceptable for Israel to sit back and not realize our right for self-defense. We said quiet will be answered with quiet. We tried to contain the situation, but the violence continued.
The problem with our neighbors is that they understand restraint as weakness, and so when we try to contain the situation they respond with violence. Our goal is to see an end to the attacks on the Israeli public. Until that happens, we will do what is needed to make that happen.
Hundreds of missiles were launched. The only reason we don’t have funerals all over the country is that we have Iron Dome. The Hamas is praying for Iron Dome to fail, but it fails only 10 % of the time. That’s why, miraculously, we don’t have casualties yet.
We are not exercising Israel’s full power because we are trying not to injure civilians. It is frustrating for Hamas, because they want civilians to be injured, they use their people as human shields, and this is a war crime. The other war crime is purposely targeting civilians, including children. Israel is the side trying to protect innocent civilians in Gaza.
Deputy Foreign Minister Hanegbi concluded by saying: "We didn’t initiate this conflict. We would like it to end. However, it is our moral commitment to protect Israeli civilians and put an end to Hamas aggression and terror".