General (res.) Uzi Dayan, who headed the Israeli National Security between 2003 and 2005, said Thursday in the wake of the combined terror attack in southern Israel that it is time to restore the IDF’s ability to operate in the Sinai Peninsula.
“Just last week I sat down with the chief of staff and discussed the issue of southern Israel,” Dayan told Arutz Sheva. “I won’t disclose the contents of the meeting, but I will say that from a military perspective we need to prepare for a new reality.”
According to Dayan, Israel wants to preserve the peace treaty with Egypt, which forbids the entry of Israeli troops into the Sinai Peninsula and limits the number of Egyptian troops which can be deployed there. On the other hand, Dayan said, Israel must also keep its fundamental right to protect its citizens.
“We do not want to heat up the region but we also do not want this border to become a terror border,” he said. “Therefore it is important to react and go after terrorists. We must ask the Egyptians to have the possibility of intervening militarily in the Sinai if it is required. We should also pressure Egypt from a strategic-political direction and use this attack to warn them to maintain the security in the area and not violate the peace agreement.”
Dayan expressed hope that Thursday’s attack is not a first sign of the deterioration of the security in the area.
“I hope the Egyptians will fulfill their duty, but on the other hand we need to retain the ability to act and intervene in Sinai,” he said. “We will have no problem operating there if need be. As soon as some attacks us, it’s our basic right to protect our citizens.”