Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday toured an Iron Dome battery near Ashkelon. During the tour he made the following remarks:
“We neither chose nor initiated this escalation but if it continues we are prepared for much more extensive and deeper action. In any case, we will continue with preventative operations. Whoever intends to attack Israeli citizens needs to know that he will bear the consequences.
“Today, I decided to accept a joint recommendation, along with Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter, to complete the protection for residents of the south. As you know, we are protected up to 4.5 kilometers from the border with Gaza and we are protected up to a range of 7 km. thanks to Iron Dome batteries like the one you see here behind me, and we will continue to add Iron Dome batteries, which are operating very well. On the seam between 4.5 km. of full protection and the 7 km. afforded by Iron Dome, there is an area in which only educational institutions are protected, and I have decided today – following the staff work that I received – to adopt protection for this entire area, between 4.5 and 7 km., and thus we will complete the defense of the residents of the south.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)