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Operation Protective Edge: Israel targets Hamas terror stronghold in Shuja'iya

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New Delhi, 22nd July, 2014:  Since the start of Operation Protective Edge, over 2,060 rockets have been fired at Israel from Gaza, striking at the civilian population throughout the country, from north to south. With the increased range of Hamas rockets, some 6 million Israelis are currently living under the threat of rocket attacks. As part of the operation, Israel forces uncovered over 23 Gaza tunnels intended for the launch of terror attack on Israel. These tunnels function as important lifelines for the civilian population of Gaza. Over the past 24 hours, the IDF conducted a terror-eliminating mission in Shuja'iya, a neighborhood renowned for its high concentration of terrorist activities.

 

 

Shuja’iya is a powerful example of Hamas’ activities throughout Gaza. Hamas has positioned rocket launchers and other terrorist infrastructures among the civilian population of Gaza, near or under homes, schools, hospitals and mosques, leaving Palestinian civilians deliberately exposed to grave danger and forced to become human shields. Hamas is also using ambulances filled with children to move their terrorists around Gaza. Hamas, perpetuates the killing of its own people in the hope that the international community will place pressure on Israel to grant its demands. Recently, UNRWA strongly condemned placement of rockets in a school in Gaza.


Despite the fact that Hamas has fired thousands of rockets at Israel, the border crossings through which goods travel from Israel to Gaza remain open and tons of food and medical supplies are still being delivered to Gazan residents. Yesterday evening, Israel opened a field hospital at Gaza border and is working with the Red Crescent in order to treat wounded Palestinians from the Gaza Strip. Hamas is repeatedly using the materials meant for Gaza civilians and uses them to build tunnels for its terror attacks.

 

PM Netanyahu said: "We opened a humanitarian field hospital on the edge of Gaza and Hamas doesn't let the people come there. They're hiding rockets in hospitals; they're hiding arms in hospitals; they're shooting from hospitals. So they just don't care." He added, "The international community should insist that any future agreement include a demilitarization of Gaza. Instead of being demilitarized under previous agreements, Gaza became an Iranian-financed and equipped fortress of terror."


Israel is doing everything it can to avoid civilian casualties and has made repeated efforts to de-escalate the situation, only to be met with aggression and terror from Hamas. Israel was ready to accept a U.S., U.N. and Arab League backed cease-fire proposal, but  Hamas rejected it and instead escalated their attacks. Israel was forced into this operation in order to defend its people and its cities. We want an end to this conflict; we want an end to violence. We are steadfast in our commitment to achieve these objectives, whether militarily or diplomatically. Israel’s objective was and remains to restore quiet and security for the people of Israel for a significant period of time.

 

Source: Embassy of Israel, New Delhi, India


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