Israeli Military: ‘Unprecedented Calm in Gaza’ Since May Conflict
i24 News – The Israeli military called the seven months since the end of the Gaza conflict in May a period of “unprecedented calm” in a year-end assessment that paints an optimistic picture of the Jewish state’s security situation, Ynet News reported.
Compared to the months following previous rounds of fighting with the Hamas-ruled coastal enclave, data from the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) shows less activity since the May 21 ceasefire that ended Operation Guardian of the Walls.
For example, 196 rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza over a half year period following Operation Cast Lead in 2009 and 76 rockets were launched in the six months after Operation Pillar of Cloud in 2012.
In contrast, a total of five rockets were launched from Gaza since last May.
The IDF also noted that progress was made over the past two years in negotiating a deal to return Israeli civilians being held hostage by Hamas, as well as the bodies of soldiers currently in the hands of the terrorist group.
However, issues remain in finalizing an agreement, specifically the number of terrorists Hamas wants released from Israeli prisons, according to the IDF report.
The assessment praised the Abraham Accords more than a year into the historic normalization of relations between Israel and four Arab Muslim countries — the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan.
It also indicated an increase in terrorist activity in the West Bank during 2021, as well as a decrease in deaths from attacks, with two this year. In 2020, there were three deaths from attacks in the West Bank, five in 2019, and 14 in 2018.
In the past year, the IDF arrested 2,899 Palestinians for questioning and confiscated about $3.5 million that was said to be intended for terrorism.