Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon on Monday evening said that Israel must fight Palestinian Arab terrorism while continuing to assist the Palestinian Arab population when necessary.
Speaking at an event honoring the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), Ya’alon said, "The struggle against Palestinian terrorism has unfortunately been going on for years, and requires resolve, an iron fist and patience. In recent weeks, the State of Israel has experienced such a terror wave, which we will fight a relentless manner, as we have done in the past. We will not defeat this terrorism with slogans, but with a determined and continuous struggle."
"The fighters and commanders of the IDF, along with the fighters and commanders of the Border Police, the Israel Police and the Israel Security Agency, have made every effort, using professionalism and creativity, in order to harm the terrorist infrastructures in Judea and Samaria, the vast majority of the time achieving very impressive success," he added.
"We will defeat this terrorism and restore security to the citizens of Israel, because we have no choice, because we have no other country," continued Ya’alon, who stressed that Israel will also fight so-called "lone wolf" attacks.
Ya'alon said that alongside the determined struggle against terrorism Israel must continue to help the Palestinian population.
"We must remember that a large Arab population lives in the area, most of which is under the control of the Palestinian Authority or under the reign of terror of Hamas in Gaza, but without the economic strength of Israel's various layers, the citizen who wishes to support his family will find it difficult to survive. This is where the role of COGAT comes into action," he said.
"We must strive to separate between the Palestinian population and terrorism. Continue to assist residents in Jenin, Shechem or Ramallah to earn a decent living and live comfortably. Help as much as possible in their economy, welfare, medicine, infrastructure and all areas of life, from top to bottom, because these are our values, and it also serves our interests," continued Ya’alon.
Finally, the Defense Minister condemned the attack on an Eritrean who was mistaken for a terrorist following Sunday’s terror attack at the Be'er Sheva Central Bus Station.
"No one should act in this way, even when the anger and sadness are great," said Ya’alon, who added, "We must act firmly and with an iron fist against terrorism on the one hand, but be balanced and responsible on the other hand."