(photo credit: Channel 10)
Israel “will not accept” rocket and mortar fire from the Gaza Strip and is ready
in the event that tensions further escalate in the area, IDF Chief of General
Staff Lt.-Gen.Gabi Ashkenazi said on Monday.
Ashkenazi’s comments came
during a meeting with Italian Chief of Defense Gen. Vincenzio Camporini at the
Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv.
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“Two years after Operation Cast Lead, the
situation in the Gaza Strip is different and calmer. Yet, sadly, from time to
time, rockets and mortar shells are fired at the Israeli home front,” Ashkenazi
“The IDF holds the Hamas terrorist organization solely responsible
for any terrorist activity emanating from the Gaza Strip. We hope that the
security situation in the south does not deteriorate, however the IDF is
preparing for any scenario,” he said.
Ashkenazi commented on the close
ties between the Italian and Israeli militaries as well, saying that “relations
between the IDF and the Italian military are very important and are based on
mutual values and interests. Italy is a great friend of Israel and is one
of the most involved forces in the region. It contributes great numbers of
forces to UNIFIL and in Afghanistan, and in the war on terror.”
called the meeting “a great opportunity to further strengthen the excellent
relations between the two militaries, as manifested in mutual training and
technology. Italy is present in the Middle East and is dealing with the
important issue of stability in the region.”
Camporini added that he had
recently returned from a visit to his forces in Lebanon and said he could
clearly see the influence of the international forces on the region.
noted that his visit to Israel is one of several mutual visits demonstrating the
good relations between the two militaries and commanders.
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