Netanyahu: Gaza ceasefire must include halt to ‘fire kites’

“We are not prepared to accept any attacks against us and we will respond appropriately,” Netanyahu stated.

By: World Israel News Staff

The new ceasefire achieved between Israel and Hamas includes an end to the launching of bomb-laden kites and arson balloons into Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asserted.

“I heard it being said that Israel has agreed to a ceasefire that would allow the continuation of terrorism by incendiary kites and balloons; this is incorrect. We are not prepared to accept any attacks against us and we will respond appropriately,” Netanyahu said at the beginning of the weekly cabinet meeting Sunday morning.

Over the weekend, Israel “hit Hamas in a significant way and hard,” he continued. “Our policy is clear: Whoever hurts us, we will hit them with great strength. This is what we did yesterday. The IDF dealt Hamas the harshest blow since Operation Protective Edge. I hope that they got the message; if not, they will get it later.”

Netanyahu was responding to criticism from his coalition members who view the ceasefire arrived at overnight between Israel and the Gaza-based terror organizations after an extremely violent weekend as a mistake and capitulation to terror.

Over the weekend, Hamas fired some 200 rockets at Israel, and in response the Israeli Air Force (IAF) carried out the largest wave of daytime strikes against Hamas terror targets in Gaza since Operation Protective Edge in the summer of 2014, bombing some 40 terror targets.

Ceasefire ‘a serious mistake’

Education Minister Naftali Bennett, head of the Jewish Home party, said that Hamas was dictating the pace of the conflict and called the ceasefire “a serious mistake.”

“A ceasefire without stopping terrorism is surrender,” he stated.

Asked if he had any criticism for the prime minister and his handling of events on the Gaza border, he replied that he had no intention of publicly censuring Netanyahu.

“The point is that after 100 days in which Hamas lights the south on fire and shoots hundreds of rockets, and [then] dictates when there is a ceasefire – this is wrong,” Bennett declared.

Hamas, Islamic Jihad continue launching ‘fire kites’

Hamas and the Islamic Jihad denied that the ceasefire included a stop to the arson terrorism.

Sources in the Gaza Strip told Israel’s Ynet news that the ceasefire only includes a gradual reduction of the incendiary balloons.

“If in the past, 50 balloons were flown every time, for example, then now 20 balloons will be flown, tomorrow 10, and the next day less. That’s the agreement, and that is what has been decided between the sides,” one source explained.

In the meantime, fires have already broken out in the south as a result of incendiary kites launched from Gaza.