Anyone who attacks Israel will pay a heavy price, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on Monday evening, shortly after Palestinian terrorists launched dozens of rockets from Gaza into Israel.
Netanyahu warned that Israel will “respond with great force,” and that the current confrontation “could continue for some time.”
Israel “will not tolerate attacks on our territory, our capital, our citizens and our soldiers,” Netanyahu said at the central Jerusalem Day ceremony on Ammunition Hill.
“We are in a struggle on several fronts: In Jerusalem, Gaza and other places in Israel,” Netanyahu said. “The terrorist groups in Gaza crossed a red line on the eve of Jerusalem Day, a red line, and attacked us with rockets on the outskirts of Jerusalem.”
The prime minister said Israel did not want an escalation, its force will be felt if there is one.
President Reuven Rivlin said Israel “will not be bowed in the face of any threat. Whoever seeks to test our resilience will find a defensive wall, an iron fist.
“Let nobody challenge the lethal might of our forces,” Rivlin added. “Do not put them to the test.”
Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan accused the international community of encouraging Palestinian violence through its recent statements calling for Israeli restraint.
“The UN, the Security Council and the Quartet have refused to unequivocally condemn Palestinian incitement and have only served to embolden Hamas terrorists, who are now firing rockets on Jerusalem and innocent civilians all over Israel,” Erdan said. “Your outrageous comments have been destructive and have further inflamed the tensions.”
Erdan pointed out that Israel stopped Jews from visiting Judaism’s holiest site, the Temple Mount, in the interest of bringing calm to Jerusalem.
“Israel has no other choice but to defend its citizens from these indiscriminate attacks and we demand the international community hold the Palestinians accountable and forcibly condemn their actions,” he said.
EU Ambassador to Israel Emanuele Giaufret said he is "extremely concerned by today's violence in East Jerusalem. The firing of rockets from Gaza to Israel is totally unacceptable and needs to stop.
"We need immediate deescalation to step back from the brink and protect civilians," Giaufret tweeted.