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Netanyahu: Whoever murders Israelis will end up in prison or dead

IDF chief Herzi Halevi said that Israel’s fight against terrorism continues and did not end with the operation in Jenin.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives for the Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, June 4, 2023. Photo by Amit Shabi/POOL.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrives for the Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, June 4, 2023. Photo by Amit Shabi/POOL.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reiterated on Sunday his government’s policy to combat Palestinian terrorism, saying that whoever murders Israelis “will end up in one of two places: Prison or the grave.”

Netanyahu began his remarks at the weekly Cabinet meeting by extending his condolences to the families of Chief Sgt. David Yehuda Yitzchak, 23, a non-commissioned officer from the Egoz commando unit who was killed last week as Israeli forces withdrew from Jenin following a two-day counterterrorism raid, and Staff Sgt. Shilo Yosef Amir, 22, a member of the Givati Brigade who was shot dead two days later by a Palestinian terrorist seeking to infiltrate the town of Kedumim.

“From the depth of its heart, the people of Israel embrace the families and we all salute the security forces that fight terrorism around the clock,” said Netanyahu.

The government’s policy was being implemented in three ways, he continued.

“First, we settle accounts with the assailants themselves, without exception. Second, we strike those who dispatch terrorists and at terrorist infrastructure. Third, we initiate and use the element of surprise. We determine the timing of our actions, as we did in ‘Operation Shield and Arrow’ against Islamic Jihad in Gaza, and as we did in the operation against terrorists in Jenin. We are changing the equation and so we will continue,” added Netanyahu.

Earlier on Sunday, IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi said that Israel’s fight against terrorism continues and did not end with last week’s operation in Jenin.

He 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,” Halevi 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 added.

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.

In May, the IDF carried out “Shield and Arrow” in response to incessant rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

On Sunday, Ichilov Hospital announced that two women seriously wounded in last week’s car-ramming and stabbing attack in Tel Aviv are “out of danger” and in stable condition.

The two women are fully conscious and breathing without the assistance of ventilators, Ichilov, which is part of Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, said in a statement.

“They will continue treatment in the coming weeks,” it added.

One of the women was pregnant and lost her baby while fighting for her life in the hospital.

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