Israel’s fight against terrorism continues and did not end with last week’s operation in Jenin, IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi said on Sunday.
Speaking at the ceremony installing Maj. Gen. Yaron Finkelman as head of the military’s Southern Command, Halevi said that the current security situation “obliges us to focus on the mission and the cohesion that supports it, so we will be ready for any challenge in any arena.
“We do not have the luxury given the prevailing reality to not show up for every challenge and task,” he continued, adding: “We have seen both in ‘Operation Shield and Arrow’ [against Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza in May] and in the latest operation in Jenin that the arenas influence each other, and therefore wisdom is required in the use of force.
“The fight against terrorism does not end with one operation; it requires determination and perseverance alongside the resilience of the state and its citizens,” Halevi said.
Last Monday, the IDF began a major counterterror operation in Jenin, including the entry into the Samaria city of significant ground forces. More than 1,000 IDF troops participated in the campaign, which is believed to have been the largest deployment in Judea and Samaria in two decades.
During nearly 48 hours of fighting, IDF troops located and demolished at least eight weapon storage sites, six bomb-making labs, three “war rooms” and other terror assets. The military also carried out some 20 drone strikes against various targets and arrested well over 100 terrorism suspects.
Chief Sgt. David Yehuda Yitzchak, 23, a non-commissioned officer from the Egoz commando unit, was killed during the withdrawal from the city.
In May, the IDF carried out “Shield and Arrow” in response to incessant rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.
During five days of fighting, Islamic Jihad fired more than 1,250 rockets at Israeli communities, to which the IDF responded by striking nearly 400 terror assets in the Hamas-ruled Palestinian enclave.