Prime Minister Naftali Bennett this week assessed the readiness of the IDF’s Gaza Division together with Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Chief of Staff Maj.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi, and other top defense officials.
Afterwards, the Prime Minister met with the frontline combat solders, including those manning the Iron Dome anti-missile shield to discuss their operational activities. Prime Minister Bennett thanked them for their important contributions to the security of Israeli citizens.
Bennett said: “The purpose of the visit here was to see that the IDF, the Southern Command and the Gaza Division are prepared – and indeed they are properly prepared for any scenario. Our mission is to provide long-term security for the residents of the south and the residents of the Gaza Strip. We will operate at a time, place and in the conditions that suit us, and not anyone else. For us, the target in Gaza is Hamas, not demonstrators or troublemakers or anyone else, only Hamas.”
Defense Minister Gantz added: “We determined after Operation Guardian of the Walls that what was is no longer and what will be we will act accordingly. We reserve the right to act aggressively in the place and time we choose and do it properly. We are not enemies of the residents of the Gaza Strip. The actual enemy of the residents of the Gaza Strip is Hamas who takes them hostage. We will be happy to facilitate as much as possible the Qatari money initiative and other initiatives (intended to help the residents). We are determined to protect our people and we know how to do it.”
Meanwhile, government officials also met with local business people who are doubly suffering under the ongoing coronavirus restrictions along with the uncertain security situation in Gaza.
Minister of Tourism Yoel Razvozov told the group: “Hamas cannot hijack our lives. This is an area that is growing, developing and attracting new residents all the time. I will make sure that tourism will grow and flourish here. We must continue to invest in this region and develop what is truly beautiful in this area.”