Livni: Int’l community must back Dubai hit

February 24, 2010 01:02

“Every terrorist must know that no one will support him when a soldier, and it doesn’t matter what soldier, tries to kill him," says opposition leader.

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Opposition leader Tzipi Livni

Tzipi Livni 311 Ariel J. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni on Tuesday called upon the international community to support Israel’s effort to fight terrorism, alluding for the first time to the assassination of Hamas weapons procurement director Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, which foreign sources have attributed to the Mossad.

Speaking at the closing plenary of the Jewish Agency Board of Governor’s meeting at the capital’s Inbal Hotel, Livni said that any comparison between terrorism and those fighting it is immoral. Noting that US forces in Afghanistan accidentally killed 27 civilians on Monday, she said it must be made clear that the world supports armies that are fighting terrorists, and not terrorists who target innocent civilians.

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“Every terrorist must know that no one will support him when a soldier, and it doesn’t matter what soldier, tries to kill him, whether it is in the Gaza Strip, Afghanistan or Dubai,” Livni said. “I don’t expect the world to welcome the killing of terrorists, but I do expect the world to not criticize it.”

Livni said she did not know who was responsible for the killing of Mabhouh. She mocked the criticism Israel has taken from the international community for the assassination.

“What was disproportionate this time?” she asked. “Was there a disproportionate use of passports?"

Livni had been under pressure to comment about the assassination, especially when it was first revealed that the assassins were caught on tape. But Livni, who briefly worked for the Mossad, refused to criticize the operation.

In her speech at the Jewish Agency meeting, she also complained that Israel’s political system had been “hijacked by ultra-Orthodox parties.”

Livni’s critic, Kadima MK Eli Aflalo, criticized her for making the party “too anti-religious.” He intends to raise such concerns at Kadima’s council meeting on Wednesday at the party’s Petah Tikva headquarters.

The theme of the council meeting will be criticizing the first year of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s administration.

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