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March 19, 2014 9:57 am

Israeli PM Netanyahu on Syria Retaliation: ‘We Attack Those Who Attack Us’

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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Prime Minister Netanyahu at his government's weekly cabinet meeting, in Jerusalem. Photo: Screenshot.

Prime Minister Netanyahu at his government's weekly cabinet meeting, in Jerusalem. Photo: Screenshot.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday said the Israeli Air Force strikes overnight of Syrian military positions were in retaliation for an attack on Israeli soldiers, and Israel will continue to respond, strike for strike.

On Tuesday, four Israel Defense Forces soldiers were injured, one severely, by an explosive device in the Golan Heights along the Syrian border, the IDF said in a statement. In response, the IDF “retaliated towards Syrian military positions,” it said.

Speaking at the start of the government’s weekly cabinet meeting on Wednesday, Netanyahu said, “Last night, the IDF attacked targets in Syrian territory. These were targets of Syrian elements that not only facilitated, but also cooperated with, the attacks on our forces. Our policy is very clear: We attack those who attack us.”

“We are also, to the best of our ability, interdicting the transfer of weapons by sea, air and land, and this activity will continue,” Netanyahu said.

“This is what has led to – in the past year and over the last five years – a low level of terrorism,” he said. “Last year, it was the lowest in a decade, both in terms of victims and in the launching of missiles and rockets.”

“From time to time we must take vigorous action, as we are now doing, so that this quiet may continue,” he said. “This vigorous policy is what is responsible for maintaining Israel’s security and that of its citizens. Relative to the Middle East as a whole, which is undergoing profound turmoil, Israel is the most stable and secure place in the entire region.”

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