Netanyahu says Assad may be trying to divert attention from the “wholesale killing” of his own citizens.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 6/6/2011, 5:54 PM / Last Update: 6/6/2011, 6:11 PM
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu accused Syria on Monday of allowing “Palestinian refugees” to reach the border with Israel a day earlier.
“The events on the Syrian border are not chance occurrences," Netanyahu said. "This is an attempt to 'warm up' the border and to breach our borders. These people have a problem with the very existence of the State of Israel.”
Speaking before a meeting with Likud party Knesset Members, Netanyahu said the Arabs involved are trying to resolve the issue of Arab refugees from 1948 through illegitimate means. “The great-grandchildren of these refugees are now attempting to flood Israel. There is no justice in that, no sense, and nothing will come of it. This is an attempt to live out a fantasy that will endanger the peace of the region.”
“We are committed to defending our borders,” he explained. “The IDF operated according to international law and we gave advance warning to the provocation’s planners that we would operate according to our rights in order to prevent the breaching of our borders.”
“I regret that I cannot say that the Syrian government put all of its weight behind stopping this provocation,” Netanyahu added. “It allowed these people reach the border.”
“This may be an attempt by Syria to divert international attention from the wholesale killing of the [Syrian] civilians by the Syrian government,” he said. “We will continue to defend our citizens and our communities and we will use maximum restraint in doing so.”