Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres caused a public storm on Monday after he called on the city of Sderot to end the hysteria over Qassam rockets. “Qassams shmassams. Kiryat Shmona was also shelled over the years,” he said. “We’ll hold firm.” His words infuriated residents of Sderot. Mayor of Sderot Eli Moyal said, “The residents are furious and we are close to declaring Peres persona non grata in this southern city hit by Qassams. He will not come close to here. Peres’ responsibility is for the development of the Negev and the Galilee and if he speaks about Sderot then he needs to settle here.” Peres said that his words were taken out of context and that he promised to do everything to defend the residents. He also warned them of creating further hysteria, which, he said, will only encourage the enemy to strike more.
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