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MK Ariel Calls for Foreign Minister Livni to be Fired

Tzippy Livni, Israel's Foreign Minister and a leading founding member of the Kadima Party, told ABC's Nightline program that terrorists who target Israeli soldiers have some legitimacy.
By Hillel Fendel
First Publish: 4/11/2006, 1:19 PM / Last Update: 4/11/2006, 4:04 PM

Livni told her interviewer that a distinction must be made between
terrorists who target soldiers and those who try to murder civilians.
She said she would not consider those who target soldiers "freedom
fighters," but added that she does view their violence as legitimate
warfare. "Terrorism against citizens, children and babies is
something else altogether," she said.

MK Uri Ariel (National Union-National Religious Party) said, "Livni
gives legitimacy to attacks against our soldiers. I call on the
[Acting] Prime Minister to fire her immediately. She is not worthy of
serving in her position."

Livni had been explaining that her parents, who fought against the
British in the 1940's before Israel gained its independence, were not
terrorists, but rather freedom fighters. She noted that when a bomb
was placed in the King David Hotel, the members of her parents' Etzel
organization provided advance warning so that the civilians inside
would not be harmed.

Minister Livni later attempted to clarify her remarks in an interview
with Israel Radio. She said she has invested great efforts over the
years to convince international officials of the gravity of terrorism, always insisting that Palestinian terrorists should not be termed "freedom fighters."

Speaking on Nightline about the recent Israeli anti-Kassam rocket
bombing raids that killed two Arab children in Gaza, together with 12
terrorists, Livni said, "The IDF and Israel will continue to war
against terrorists who target soldiers," though not necessarily
terming them terrorists. She said that Israel would continue its
bombardments of Gaza for as long as the Arabs fire rockets.

"The role of the Israeli army is to defend Israeli civilians, combat
terrorism and prevent rocket attacks," Livni said today. "As long as
Palestinians fire at residential area, the army must reply."