Gillerman defends Beirut air strikes

"We'll do whatever necessary to retrieve the soldiers and secure our borders."

July 14, 2006 02:51
1 minute read.
Gillerman defends Beirut air strikes

danny gillerman 298.88. (photo credit: AP)


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Israeli ambassador to the UN Dan Gillerman stressed Friday in an interview to CNN that Israel was attacking the Hizbullah and its infrastructure, and had no intention of destabilizing the current government of Lebanon. When asked why the Beirut International Airport was targeted by the IAF in two series of strikes on Thursday, Gillerman explained that Israel had decided to target the airport because the IDF had intelligence that it could be a route via which the Hizbullah would attempt to smuggle two kidnapped IDF soldiers out of Lebanon.

"We don't want them whisked away," Gillerman said, adding that Israel would do "whatever necessary to retrieve the soldiers, secure its borders, and protect its citizens." When asked if Israel was considering an attack on Syria and Iran, the ambassador responded that there was no doubt that the "twisted minds" of Syria and Iran were behind the kidnappings, which occurred Wednesday morning when Hizbullah guerrillas attacked IDF soldiers along the Lebanese border, killing eight. Most of the arsenal utilized by the Hizbullah, Gillerman continued, was financed by Syria and Iran. "[Israel's] aim is to stop Hizbullah shelling," he stated, whereas the Hizbullah specifically targeted civilians. "For them, every dead civilian, every dead child, is a cause for celebration. For us, every dead civilian is a tragedy. That's the difference between us and them," he declared.

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