Monday, May 21, 2007

IAF Kills Qassam Launch Commander Samah Faroneh

Senior Member of the Hamas Terror Organization Killed Last Night in an IDF Attack

Source: Security Services
Photo Source: IDF Archive Photo

An IDF attack, last night, in the region of Sa'ajaya, in the Gaza Strip, resulted in the death of Samah Faroneh, a senior member of the Hamas terror organization.

Samah Faroneh, 28, a resident of the Gaza Strip, was involved in a large number of Qassam rocket attacks against Israel and in the mortar shelling against IDF posts in the Gaza Strip and in the "Horvus" Route. He was also involved in the rocket attacks against Israel this past Independence Day.

Faroneh was a senior member of his terrorist cell and participated in implementing past sniper attacks Israeli citizens and IDF soldiers particularly on 19.3.2007, in the Horvus route region on the 19.3.2007, which resulted in the injury of an Israeli citizen.

In addition, the IDF is continuing its attacks against terrorist targets, tonight, in northern Gaza, in response to the non-stop rocket attacks against Israel. This evening, the IAF attacked a lorry suspected of carrying weapons for the terror organization Hamas, in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip. The IDF also aerially attacked a weapons storehouse and a weapons factory run by the Islamic Jihad terror organization in central Gaza Strip.

Click here to view attack footage courtesy of Israel Air Force


IDF attacks terrorist sites in response to Qassam rocket attacks

Sunday 20/05/2007 01:15

The IDF aerially attacked various terrorist cell sites in the Gaza Strip this weekend, in response to continuous Qassam rockets fired into Israeli territory by Palestinian terror organizations.

In addition, the IDF attacked a missile launcher in southern Gaza. The IDF also targeted and destroyed a missile launcher in northern Gaza.

41 Qassam rockets fell non-stop in Israeli territory on Thursday.

The IDF aerially attacked the following targets on Friday: A high trajectory rocket launcher, two weapons manufacturing sites in northern Gaza and a vehicle containing weapons meant for use by the Hamas terror organization. On Friday night, the IDF attacked a building used as a meeting center for Hamas operations. The building was suspected as being used as a starting point for tunnel digging.

The IDF aerially attacked the following targets on Saturday: A high trajectory rocket launcher in northern Gaza- following rocket attacks in the western Negev. 12 rockets fell in Israel territory on Saturday. One rocket that fell in an open area in the western Negev caused a fire to break out. No injuries were reported.

Click here to view IAF arial anti-terror activity.


Summary of events in the Gaza Strip overnight


Yesterday. May 20th 2007, 14 rockets launched by Palestinian terrorists from
the Gaza Strip landed in Israel, three of them hitting a restaurant, a car
and a football field. In the past 6 days terrorists have launched
approximately 150 rockets into Israel.

Overnight the IDF carried out four aerial attacks against terrorist targets
in the Gaza Strip:

· A truck in a weapons-production facility in Gaza city, suspected
of delivering weaponry for Hamas.
· A weapons-storage facility of the Islamic Jihad in Nuserat in the
central Gaza Strip.
· A Hamas terrorist responsible for manufacturing weaponry in Gaza
· A weapons-production facility of the Islamic Jihad in the central
Gaza Strip.

The IDF will continue to operate against the terror organizations in order
to ensure the security and safety of the citizens of Israel.


Hamas figure: Fight the Jews 'til last of them leaves Palestine

By Haaretz Service Last update - 11:58 21/05/2007

A senior Hamas figure in Gaza was quoted Monday as urging Palestinian
factions to "continue to fight the Jews until the last of them is gone from

In an interview with Hamas Television quoted on Israel Radio, Nizar Riyan, a
leading member of the Islamic group's political wing, said:

"It is a definite decision within the organization that Israel will be
removed from the map, to be replaced by a Palestinian state."

Riyan was also quoted as urging armed Palestinian factions to "Shell
Ashkelon until its residents clear out, as did the residents of Sderot."


PM Olmert Meets with Local Council Heads and School Principals from
Communities Around the Gaza Strip

Source: Prime Minister's Media Adviser

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Education Minister Yuli Tamir met this
evening (Sunday), 20.5.07, with local council heads and school principals
from communities around the Gaza Strip. The latter told the Prime Minister
and the Education Minister how they are coping with educating children in
the security uncertainty of the Kassam threat. The local council heads
requested assistance in protecting all homes in their communities.

Prime Minister Olmert said: "I know what conditions you are living under and
I do not envy you. I understand your distress. I know what it means for a
child - even if a Kassam does not fall on the roof of his home - to hear the
missile strikes and go to sleep every night in fear. But I also want to
tell you that all of the problems cannot be solved in one go and that we are
currently trying to make it so unpleasant for them that they will reduce the
firing. In the meantime, the question is how much we can improve your lives
and I think that the decisions that were made at today's Cabinet meeting
( ) will certainly help. It is important to me
that you know that we are truly with you. I know how much energy you are
investing and we will do our utmost to improve your lives."

Education Minister Tamir praised the dedicated efforts of area educators and
specially thanked Education Ministry Southern District Director Amira Haim.
The Education Minister noted there has been a marked increase in the number
of Sderot high school students who are eligible to take the matriculation


Security Cabinet Meets

Source: Prime Minister's Media Adviser

The Security Cabinet convened this evening (Sunday), 20.5.07, to continue
discussing the situation in the Gaza Strip. Security establishment
officials briefed ministers on recent events including the missile assault
against Sderot and other communities in the area around the Gaza Strip.

It was decided to allow the security establishment to step up operational
measures designed to reduce missile fire and strike at the terrorist
infrastructure behind the firing. At this stage, operational activity will
focus on Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets since these organizations are
responsible for the current escalation. To the extent that these sharper
measures do not lead to increased calm, the Security Cabinet will reconvene
to consider additional, more drastic measures.

The military steps will be accompanied by diplomatic and information efforts
in the international community in order to explain Israel's actions and
create the proper diplomatic climate that is conducive to achieving the
goals that have been decided upon.

The Security Cabinet also decided to accelerate dealing with the Home Front
in accordance with this morning's Cabinet decision.


Sunday, May 20, 2007


Source: Cabinet Secretariat

At the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday), 20.5.07:

1. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert discussed the situation in Sderot and in the
other communities around the Gaza Strip: "Since last Tuesday, the city of
Sderot and the other communities around the Gaza Strip have been under
further attack. Over 120 Kassam rockets were launched from the Gaza Strip
in five days.

The Hamas terrorist organization, which constitutes a significant part of the Palestinian Authority (PA) government, has again proven to the entire world that it is a murderous terrorist organization through and through. The security establishment is operating against the terrorists responsible for these attacks and dozens of them have been killed in recent days. Hamas members are paying - and will yet pay - for their actions.

We, in the Government, bear a heavy responsibility for the peace and welfare of the approximately 40,000 Israelis who live in Sderot and in the other communities around the Gaza Strip.

In the last five years, the State has invested over NIS 1 billion in strengthening security components, in economic assistance and in strengthening the communities in the area.

Out of this sum, over NIS 300 million has been invested - and is being
invested - in protecting educational institutions. As of now, approximately
170 schools and kindergartens have been protected. Beyond the defense
Ministry, which is responsible for dealing with the home front, the Social
Welfare and Social Services, Health, Immigrant Absorption, Education and
Pensioners' Affairs ministries are active on the ground in offering special
assistance to weaker populations, taking residents on short vacations and in
offering psychological help."

Prime Minister Olmert noted that Defense Minister Amir Peretz has decided on
the existence of a special home front situation in Sderot and in the other
communities around the Gaza Strip and added that he concurred with the
Defense Minister. The Prime Minister said that the Government would grant
communities around the Gaza Strip the status of confrontation line
communities similar to that of communities on the northern border.

Prime Minister Olmert made it clear that in accordance with the decisions
that were taken in the framework of implementing the lessons from the
fighting in the north - the Defense Ministry is the body responsible for
dealing with the home front and for coordinating the activities of all
Government ministries.

2. Prime Minister Olmert, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Bank of Israel
Governor Prof. Stanley Fischer briefed ministers on Israel's joining the
OECD ( ). The Cabinet decided on several steps,
including - inter alia - the creation of professional steering committee to
oversee the accession process. See for further

3. Defense Minister Peretz and Foreign Minister Livni briefed ministers on
security and diplomatic issues regarding the situation in the Gaza Strip.

Defense Minister Peretz said that the Palestinian situation was
deteriorating amidst the struggle between Fatah and Hamas and the
ineffectualness of the PA government in dealing with the anarchy on the
Palestinian street. The Defense Minister referred to the violent clashes in
which many Palestinians, mainly Fatah members, have been killed. He said
that the escalation was finding expression in increased terrorism from the
Gaza Strip toward Sderot and the other communities around the Gaza Strip and
added that the dynamic of escalation was liable to lead to an upsurge in
Hamas terrorism.

The Defense Minister said that while Israel was not interested in intervening in an internal Palestinian conflict, it did not intend to show restraint toward continuing terrorism and missile attacks against its citizens. He detailed the steps being taken by the IDF against Palestinian terrorism and noted that he has instructed the Defense Ministry Director-General to continue providing support for the weaker populations in Sderot.

Foreign Minister Livni said that international attitudes to the situation
include the need to deal with the Hamas challenge. She said that the
Foreign Ministry was making diplomatic and informational efforts to close
the gap in awareness in order to bring about international and Arab pressure
on Hamas, to create legitimacy for Israel's military actions and to put the
Kassam fire and the threat posed by a strengthening Hamas atop the agenda.

Prime Minister and Acting Finance Minister Olmert announced that he would
send to the Knesset Finance Committee directives enabling the Sderot and
Gaza area confrontation line communities to receive property tax assistance
regarding indirect compensation. See for
further details.

4. The Cabinet discussed Ashdod Energy Co. Inc.'s authorization to prepare a
national infrastructure plan for using natural gas to generate electricity.
See for further details.

5. The Cabinet discussed various proposals for using desalination to
increase the water supply. See for further
details. [IMRA: Maximum capacity to be built - 305 million cubic meters/year
with possibility that if projects in list not implemented that alternative
projects will be considered].

6. The Cabinet declared various floods that occurred in 2005 and 2006 to be
natural disasters in accordance with the 1989 Natural Disaster Compensation
Law. See table.