IDF strikes Gaza terror cell for second time in 24-hours

By Tovah Lazaroff
July 23, 2018 16:39
Smoke rises following an Israeli strike on a building in Gaza City July 14, 2018. (photo credit: REUTERS/IBRAHEEM ABU MUSTAFA)

The IDF struck a Gaza terror cell Monday afternoon for the second time in 24 hours as Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman warned Hamas that Israel was not afraid to go to war.

Last night Israel’s air-force also struck a Gaza terror cell which had launched flaming kites and balloons into southern Israel.

On Saturday, as part of an Egypt brokered understanding, Hamas agreed to halt its violent attacks against Israel, which has included rockets, mortars, flaming kites and balloons. There have also been repeated infiltration attempts and violent riots at the Gaza Israel border. On Friday, a Palestinian sniper killed an Israeli soldier who was defending the border fence.

There have been no attacks against Israel since Saturday. Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman has said he will rescind the severe restrictions he has imposed on Gaza’s main commercial crossing by Tuesday as long as Hamas continues to hold its fire.

Liberman met Monday with members of the IDF’s general staff to discuss the border violence.

“Regarding the Gaza Strip, we must ask ourselves four basic questions: Is the State of Israel interested in a war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip? The answer is no. Are we deterred from [engaging in a military] campaign in the Gaza Strip? Here too, the answer is no,” Liberman said.

“Are we prepared to accept a reality in which there is fire, incendiary kites and friction along the fence? The answer is no. Have we done everything we can to prevent a war in Gaza? The answer is yes,” Liberman said.

“So everything that happens from here on in with regard to the Gaza Strip is solely the responsibility of the Hamas leadership,” he said.

“We hit Hamas very hard over the weekend and – if it proves necessary – we will hit them seven-fold,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said.

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