After an emergency meeting late Thursday, Israel’s security cabinet ordered the IDF to “continue taking strong action against the terrorist elements,” the Prime Minister’s Office said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman held the meeting at the Defense Ministry’s headquarters in Tel Aviv, which was attended by Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot and other senior defense officials.
IDF Spokesman Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis said on Thursday that Hamas is “playing with fire” and that the IDF is prepared to “escalate our actions until quiet returns to the south.”
“The IDF has used the past four years to improve our capabilities, in the air and on the ground. What we’ve seen until now is only a small part of what we can do. The decision as to what to do and how much force to use is given to the political echelons, but we will bring quiet to residents of the south,” he said.
Earlier on Thursday the IDF targeted a five-story building in Rimal in the northern Gaza Strip. The military said that the building was used by Hamas’s interior security forces.
“Hamas’ interior security unit is responsible for all security operations carried out inside Gaza, and is considered to be an executive branch of Hamas’ political leadership,” the IDF Spokesperson Unit said.
“The building served as the office of active unit members. A significant part of the unit’s members are also Hamas military operatives.”
Earlier today, IDF fighter jets targeted a 5-story building in Rimal, northern Gaza. Hamas‘ interior security forces used the building for military purposes pic.twitter.com/bGbdzDczDy
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) August 9, 2018
Meanwhile, Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon called on the U.N. Security Council to condemn Hamas.
“Sirens again burst the hopes of children near the Gaza border for a quiet summer vacation – no country would stand for such a situation. The international community must condemn Hamas and hold the organization responsible for this incomparable terror attack,” said Danon.
“Israel will continue to use all necessary tools to prevent harm to its citizens and defend its sovereignty.”