Lieberman on rocket fire: We don't want escalation

Foreign minister warns "there will be consequences" if Gaza rocket attacks don't stop; Livni visits Gan Yavne, praises residents' bravery.

Liberman BS 311 (photo credit: Benjamin Spier)
Liberman BS 311
(photo credit: Benjamin Spier)
Israel is not seeking a confrontation with the Palestinians, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Saturday following a barrage of rockets on southern Israel.
Speaking during a state visit to Bosnia, he said, "We don't want an escalation of the situation, but we won't accept barrage after barrage without a response."
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"I hope this evening, with the help of neighboring countries, the international community and the Palestinian Authority, that the rocket fire will stop," he said. "Otherwise there will be consequences in the coming days."
Opposition leader Tzipi Livni (Kadima) visited Gan Yavne, where one of the rockets fell, on Saturday evening.
“I will support any action the government chooses in order to stop the attacks,” she said. “Residents of the south bravely deal with constant attacks, and we all will try to support them.”
Livni also wrote on her Facebook page that the rockets “remind everyone that the South is full of terrorist extremists, whom Israel must weaken directly and by negotiating with moderates who do not use violence.”
“Now, when Hamas feels strong following the Schalit deal, we must be aggressive in order to bring back Israel’s deterrence,” MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) said. “We must make the residents of the towns surrounding Gaza, and all of Israel’s citizens feel safe again.”
According to National Union MK Arye Eldad, “after avoiding a military attack on the heads of terrorist organizations and instead surrendering to Hamas and freeing hundreds of murderers will force us to act now.”
“The excuse that [Gilad] Schalit will be hurt can no longer hide the disgrace of our capitulation,” he added. “Now Israel must stop reacting and start preventing. Only methodically wiping out the heads of terrorist organizations, especially Jabari who held Schalit, will bring back our deterrence that was worn out by the deal [for Schalit’s release].”