IDF to southern residents: Carry your weapons over the holiday

Concerned about possible mass infiltration, Home Front Command warns residents of Gaza-area towns to carry their personal weapons on Pesach.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Military training on the Gaza border
Military training on the Gaza border
IDF spokesperson

The IDF's Home Front Command ordered residents of Gaza Belt communities to carry their personal weapons over the upcoming holiday, Channel 2 reported on Wednesday.

Gaza Belt communities are those immediately bordering Gaza, up to 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) away.

The Pesach (Passover) holiday begins on Friday at sundown.

The Home Front Command's warning comes after Gazans announced their intention to march towards Israel in a "march of return," scheduled to take place on Friday.

According to Channel 2, Israel's security forces decided that in addition to widescale preparations, civilians living in areas bordering Gaza need to be prepared for "every situation."

Since there is a chance that the march will breach the Gaza-Israel border fence and protesters will enter Israel, the security coordinators of border towns decided not to take chances, and ordered residents to carry their personal weapons during the holidays.

Meanwhile, the IDF's Southern Command is preparing to close the area around the Gaza-Israel border, and declare it a closed military zone.

On Wednsday, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot warned that the army has been given authorization to open fire ahead of mass protests on the Gaza border planned for Friday if there are any attempts to cross the Gaza border fence into Israel. He also said reinforcements, including special forces snipers, had deployed to the border to counter what he said was the most serious risk of conflict since he took up his post in 2015.

Earlier on Wednesday, a Gazan man infiltrated Israeli territory after crossing the security fence along the Gaza border. Similar incidents occurred on both Tuesday and Saturday.

Miraculously, no one was harmed.








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