(May 30, 2018 / Israel Hayom) Israel’s Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan called on the government to resume its policy of targeted assassinations against Gaza terrorists, saying Hamas’s leaders “should be afraid for their lives.”
Erdan made the remark in an interview with Channel 12’s early news edition, which covered the massive barrage of mortar shells fired at Israel’s south throughout the day. The Israel Defense Forces said more than 130 mortars were fired at Israel on Tuesday.
He stressed that Israel had no interest in an escalation at the Gaza border, “certainly not while we complete the underground [counter tunnel] barrier, but on the other hand, I don’t think we know whether Hamas and Islamic Jihad want it [an escalation] or not.”
Erdan stressed that Hamas, as Gaza’s ruler, is responsible for the attacks, saying, “We assert that Hamas leaders control the situation on the ground. Since this is the case, they should be afraid for their lives. The policy of targeted assassinations should be reinstated this evening.”
“When you shoot mortar shells at a kindergarten and continue shooting when the children leave schools, you take into account what Israel’s response could be if someone gets hurt,” he added. “I think we should say—time’s up.”
Construction and Housing Minister Yoav Gallant, formerly GOC Southern Command and a member of the Diplomatic-Security Cabinet, echoed the call.
“We will not tolerate any violation of our sovereignty or any attempt to harm Israeli civilians,” he said. “We will defend our residents and our soldiers, and deal terrorism a forceful blow. Every option should be considered, including targeted assassinations against terrorists and their handlers. None of them is immune, and we can get to all of them.”