Security minister criticizes IDF policy not to open fire on terror kite fliers

The Internal Security Minister said that the IDF should order soldiers to shoot terrorists who fire rockets and those who fly incendiary kites into Israel.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

Internal Security Minister Gilad Erdan criticized the IDF Tuesday, saying they should allow soldiers to open fire on Palestinians who fly kites booby-trapped with fire bombs.

Hundreds of these incendiary kites have been flown into Israel from the Gaza Strip over the past few weeks that have burned down hundreds of acres of crops and forests.

In an interview on Israel Radio, Erdan noted that “it took the IDF a long time to realize that these kites are far from being a game, and even the burning of fields, which is extremely serious on its own, is enough justification to shoot in order to prevent the sending of the kites, let alone now that we know the kites are being equipped with explosives.”

He repeated what he had tweeted before Sunday’s cabinet meeting, where the newest terror tactic was discussed: “There is no difference between those who shoot rockets and mortars and those who send explosive kites.”

‘A child could touch a kite and explode’

The minister pointedly put the responsibility for coming up with a proper response on the military, saying that foot-dragging is unacceptable.

“A child could touch a kite and explode, God forbid,” he warned.

He added he cannot accept the IDF’s concern that there could be judicial reasons for not shooting the kite-flyers. The IDF already has “open-fire” procedures in place to prevent terrorists from approaching the border fence to destroy it or try to infiltrate into Israel, and the kite-senders are no different, he explained.