Peres: Gaza Missiles on Israel a ‘Declaration of War’
The latest round of missile attacks from Gaza on Israel is nothing less than a “declaration of war,” President Shimon Peres said Sunday at the dedication of a new medical school in Tzfat, in northern Israel.
“Terror does not allow Gaza citizens to live normally…. I am telling our [Arab] neighbors: You nor we want war. But Gaza missiles are a declaration of war,” the President said.
“I came here to speak about a vision in the north, but the front today is in southern Israel,” said the president, hours after one person was killed and more than a dozen others were wounded by a massive missile barrage on major urban centers.
The President, who after the expulsion of Jews from Gaza during the “Disengagement” in 2005 expressed surprise at Hamas’ continuing missile attacks, warned Hamas that its challenge of Israel’s existence will end up as a challenge to its own presence.
“Their claim that the IDF, in preventing rocket attacks on Israel, murdered the rocket launchers is ridiculous,” he said. “Why did they shoot [the missiles]? And where are those in the world who claim Israel responds disproportionately. Are missile attacks an acceptable provocation?"
Turning his attention to the new medical college, President Peres recalled the initial days of Ben Gurion University in the Negev. “We started with almost nothing – two-three buildings and a small group of professors.
“Today, it is impossible to understand the development of the Negev without the university. Be’er Sheva is the capital of the Negev and Tzfat is the capital of the Galilee.”
President Peres, often noted as an eternal optimist, noted that almost every hospital in Israel includes Arab and Jewish doctors and nurses as well as patients. He asked rhetorically, “If we can live in peace with the sick, why is it impossible to live in peace when they are healthy?”