Chairman of the Yesh Atid Party MK Yair Lapid on Monday opened the party faction meeting with condolences to Lt. Col. M’s family. The officer was killed in a confrontation with Hamas terrorists on a mission in Gaza. He wished a speedy recovery to the commander injured in the same mission.
Yair stated, “from now on we will give our full backing to the IDF security forces. They risk their lives daily for the security and defense of the civilians in the area around Gaza. The death of the Khan Yunis battalion commander, Nour Baraka, was not the mission’s goal, but he was a legitimate target. No one is immune, not even the most senior [of Hamas].”
“At this time,” he added, “I want to put my support behind the political echelon. There is not such mission such as this, without it’s risks. There is no sterile condition. They have our backing even in such cases where not everything goes according to plan.”
MK Lapid said about the situation in the last 24 hours for the residents in the Gaza area. “if the children are told to stay at home because there is no school, at least one parent should receive compensation for the loss of a day’s work. It is not possible that the residents of the entire area are told to leave their children at home, but only the communities within the 7-kilometer line are protected. The Sha'ar Hanegev Regional Council has at least three unarmed communities where there is no school this morning. It cannot be that an arbitrary line determined years ago will distinguished between a child and a child in the Gaza area.”
A directive by the Ministry of Defense had gone out that schools the area around Gaza were to be closed, as well as the Israel Railway service.
Lapid stated that the protection Resilience Centers need to be strengthened. These centers are designated throughout the southern Gaza area, where anyone can get professional treatment with anxiety after traumatic events.
“On my last visit to Sderot, immediately after the barrage of Qassam rockets, a mentally injured, traumatized person approached me. He told me that he could not go to the center because he had already used up his visit quota. This is illogical. When there is such an event, like there just was, the centers need to be reinforced. Anyone who wants treatment should be treated,” he said.
Lapid emphasized, “What we need to do in Gaza, what we should have done four years ago, is to create proper leverage with strength against the Hamas. Economical leverage will cause the population in Gaza to stand up to Hamas and demand quiet. That is what we should have done after Operation Protective Edge. That is what we need to do now.”