Gallant at the Judea and Samaria Division
Gallant at the Judea and Samaria DivisionAriel Hermoni, Ministry of Defense

Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant on Sunday held a situational assessment at the Judea and Samaria Division together with Central Command Commanding Officer Maj. Gen. Yehuda Fox, Division Commander Brig. Gen. Yaki Dolef, and the regional brigade commanders.

He was briefed on the forces' intensive activities against terror centers in the refugee camps, and the operational efforts to protect roads and communities.

Gallant praised the brigade commanders for their precise work to eliminate terrorists without harming civilians and emphasized that the security forces would be given all needed resources to eliminate terror in Judea and Samaria.

The Defense Minister stated following the assessment: "The activity in the region is very impressive, and the results speak for themselves. This shows two things: the amount of energy there is in the field to harm and the very high-quality work by the IDF and Shin Bet."

According to him, at the moment, Israel must bolster the Palestinian Authority. "When it comes to Gaza there is a double effect, one is of inspiration, and the other is of anger. On this background, there are things that we must regulate and I hope that the government will accept the IDF and Shin Bet's stance when it comes to laborers and funds. I say clearly: a strong Palestinian Authority is an Israeli security interest, no less.

"Hamas's goal in Gaza is to ignite Judea and Samaria as well as the Temple Mount to get out of the IDF's stranglehold, that's the story, the IDF is choking them, they relied on the Iranians, they relied on Hezbollah, they relied on exhausting the Israeli public, they relied on a rift with the Americans, all that didn't work for them. What do they have left? To try to move other things, what is the central thing? To try to do something that would ignite Judea and Samaria and that would ignite the Temple Mount. And on this matter I repeat, your obligation is to prepare for war, to be ready, to collect all relevant intelligence, and to get ready," Gallant claimed.

He added, “On the other hand, it is our duty as an establishment to relieve the pressure. Relieving this pressure requires us to accept the recommendations provided by the IDF, regardless of one’s worldview. Our priority now is to win in Gaza, while defending Judea and Samaria and the northern arena.”

As for the local communities the Minister stated that] the number of violent incidents is decreasing significantly. "The involvement of the communities in this issue is only partial. This does not characterize the communities of Judea and Samaria."

Gallant concluded: “We have decided that we will defeat Hamas - we will not stop until we dismantle the capabilities of this organization, all over Gaza. We have declared war on Hamas in Judea and Samaria, in Lebanon - wherever it may be necessary.”

The Defense Minister's call to strengthen the Palestinian Authority was met with fury from his fellow cabinet members.

Economy Minister Nir Barkat criticized: "Minister Gallant lives in the misconception from October 6th. It is sad that Gallant still thinks that giving money to the Palestinians will by us quiet from terrorism. It's as if nothing happened on the Black Saturday (October 7th)

"It is not the Israeli government's job to make sure the Palestinian laborers have work. The Israeli economy needs the hands of workers from peaceful nations and not Palestinian laborers who threaten the Israeli public's security. What was won't be."

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir commented: "The time has come that the Defense Minister stops dreaming that letting in workers who are full of hate towards Jews into Israel and that a strong terror funding chain is Israeli interests. The Defense Minister should be busy defeating Israel's enemies, not strengthening them."