Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Israel views with “utmost gravity” the firing Thursday night of two rockets toward Tel Aviv, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday, even as the possibility of a major conflagration as a result of that incident was averted.
“Hamas bears the responsibility for all attacks from the Gaza Strip, whether the firing is intentional or in error,” Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting. Hamas claimed that the rocket fire was “a mistake.”
Netanyahu pointed out that as a result of the rocket fire he directed the IDF to hit 100 Hamas targets inside Gaza.
“The IDF hit them hard
,” he said. “If necessary we will intensify those attacks as is needed, in order to continue to ensure quiet for Israel’s citizens.”
Netanyahu announced to the cabinet the planned visit later this week of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and said he will discuss with the top US diplomat, “our efforts to thwart the military entrenchment of Iran in Syria and – above all – we will discuss the efforts to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.”
Pompeo is scheduled to arrive on Wednesday, and will take part that day in a summit with Netanyahu, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades.
The three countries, with the blessing of the US, are expected to sign an agreement that will lead to construction of a natural gas pipeline from the Eastern Mediterranean to Europe.
This pipeline from Israel’s offshore natural gas fields, through Cyprus and Greece, then further on into Europe, “will bring vast revenue to the state coffers,” Netanyahu said.
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