Israel Voices Security Concerns
According to an Israeli broadcast Israel voiced its utmost concern over the Egyptian authorities’ intention to reopen the Rafah Border Crossing with the Gaza Strip in the coming few days, and to let it open around the clock.
Israeli Radio quoted political sources warning that Israel fears an open border would allow the free passage of weapons and personnel into Gaza , a stronghold of militant factions bent on attacking the Jewish state, despite the efforts made by Egyptian security forces. They also warned that the new system would be part of Egypt ‘s intention to improve relations with Hamas in Gaza , with strategic implications related to Israel ‘s security.
“We are very concerned about the situation in northern Sinai where Hamas has succeeded in building a dangerous military machine, despite Egyptian efforts to prevent that,” he said.
Chief of General Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz declared that “in recent months, we have been witnesses to an upheaval in the Middle East from which has arisen a new reality and a different strategic fabric.”
“This new and ambiguous situation is fraught with opportunities, but the IDF naturally also sees the dangers and lurking threats to the security of the state of Israel ,” Lt. Gen. Gantz said.
He continued: “As commander of the IDF, it is actually during this period of ambiguity and stormy waters that the IDF’s mission has become clearer to me than ever – to prepare for potential threats and constantly examine trends. And so we will face with determination any challenge presented to us in order to defend the state of Israel and its people.”
Israeli leaders on Thursday called for the boycott of the Palestinian unity deal between rivals Hamas and Fatah, saying it did not recognize Israel and “has not renounced terrorism, the daily “haaretz” said.
Foreign Ministry Director General Rafael Barak sent a classified cable to Israel ’s ambassadors to the EU, directing them to make clear that Israel expects European leaders not to automatically release statements welcoming the Palestinian unity government.