Gallant addresses Knesset
Gallant addresses KnessetDani Shem Tov - Knesset Spokesperson

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said that the majority of Hamas terrorists in Gaza have been killed or injured during the nine months of the war against Hamas.

"The IDF soldiers have had many achievements," Gallant said in response to a question by Religious Zionism party MK Ohad Tal. "We eliminated or wounded 60 percent of the Hamas terrorists. We destroyed the 24 battalions [of Hamas] or the vast majority of them. We returned half of the hostages and we are determined to return the rest."

In response to a question about why Israel continues to provide electricity to the Gaza Strip while it is at war with its terrorist rulers, Gallant said, "The security establishment is determined to achieve the goals of the war. In order for us to be able to do these things, it is appropriate that we preserve our [international] support on the battlefield."

He continued, "Continued international legitimacy, which includes demands for humanitarian conditions, is a basic condition in order to allow the IDF to continue to operate. We need to maintain [the electricity] in order to prevent a humanitarian crisis in Gaza."

Addressing the government's efforts to draft haredim into the IDF following the Supreme Court's ruling last month that haredi yeshiva students can no longer receive mass exemptions from military service, Gallant said that "the last nine months have proven above all else that the IDF needs soldiers."

According to Gallant, 3,000 additional haredi soldiers will be drafted over the next year.

“Our goal is to draft all those that can be recruited according to the law. This is how we work," he said, adding that reversing 76 years of policy will be a gradual process and the first draft notices will be sent out in the coming weeks.