Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu reiterated on Sunday night that Operation Protective Edge in Gaza will continue for as long as necessary and until its objectives have been reached.
Netanyahu’s declaration came after a security assessment he held with Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz and Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) chief Yoram Cohen.
"Operation Protective Edge continues until its goals are achieved - restoring quiet and security to Israeli citizens for an extended period, with significant damage to the terrorist infrastructure. It will take as long as it takes, using as much force as needed," Netanyahu said after the assessment.
"After completing its action against the tunnels, the IDF will prepare to continue the operation according to Israel’s security needs, until we achieve the goals of the operation," he stressed.
The Prime Minister addressed the growing condemnation of Israel’s attacks on innocent civilians in Gaza, as Israel was once again criticized for an attack on a United Nations school in Gaza.
"Hamas is interested in having Gazans suffer, thinking that the world will blame Israel for their suffering,” he said, emphasizing, “Israel does not deliberately shoot at civilians and we are sorry for any accidental harming of civilians. In contrast, Hamas uses Gazans as human shields and deliberately shoots at residents of Israel.”
Netanyahu made similar comments on Saturday night, saying that Operation Protective Edge in Gaza will continue "for as much time as necessary," despite earlier reports indicating that some IDF forces may be withdrawing.
The Prime Minister explained that some troops are being distanced from civilian areas where the IDF has achieved its objectives to prevent unnecessary friction.