Releases Key Information on Terrorists Abatement
Shehada was one of the most notorious terrorists in the history
of the Middle East.
The operation against Shehada constitutes an important step towards
the defeat of fundamentalist terrorism. This terrorism is the greatest
obstacle to the renewal of negotiations and the return to a peace
Salah Shehada was the most important commander of Izz al-Din al-Qassam,
the military wing of the Hamas Organization. He was at the top of
the wanted list amongst the members of Izz al-Din al-Qassam – the
most lethal and extreme of the Palestinian terrorist organizations.
This was a strike against a high-ranking terrorist with much blood
on his hands.
Shehada and the organization that he commanded are responsible for
dozens of atrocities and for the cold-blooded killings of hundreds
of innocent civilians, including Israelis, Americans and other nationals.
It is the duty of every democratic country to defend its citizens.
Israel regrets it if there was any loss of life among Palestinian
civilians in the course of its operation, and, particularly, if
children were among the casualties. In contrast to the terrorists,
Israel does its utmost, as a matter of policy, to avoid harming
innocent civilians. Unfortunately, the war against terrorism is
not "sterile", however Israel will continue to take great
pains to avoid harming innocent civilians.
campaign of murderous terrorism, in which Shehada played a central
role, has left Israel with no choice but to respond with an uncompromising
war on terrorism, with the aim of ending the indiscriminate killings
of its citizens. The terrorists operate with the premeditated intention
of killing innocent women and children, and Israel will continue
to act to prevent these murderous terrorist attacks in the future.
Had the Palestinian
Authority arrested Shehada, there would have been no need for this
act of self defense. The action taken against Shehada was designed
to prevent the killing of many Israelis. Shehada was in the process
of preparing a large-scale terrorist attack inside Israel. He constituted
a ticking bomb, and it was a matter of the highest urgency that
he be stopped.
It should be emphasized that the recent period in Israel has not
been quiet. In the past week alone, there were two major terrorist
attacks and every day, a large number of terrorist attacks were
foiled. Israel cannot stand idly by while its citizens are being
murdered on a regular basis.
The operation against Shehada constitutes an additional step towards
defeating terrorism, undertaken in light of the clear need to re-establish
calm and return to the negotiating table with the Palestinians.
Terrorism and negotiations cannot coexist. Therefore, if the Palestinians
are truly interested in negotiations and the implementation of reforms,
they must renounce terrorism and stop the terrorism that emanates
from their midst.