In an interview with The Jerusalem Times, Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said that he will not accept the death penalty for the soldiers who carried out the attack in the occupied territories, adding that he is willing to accept it.
Yaalon, who is not known for his nuanced views on the subject, spoke at length about his views on Israel’s future course of action and what the Israeli people should do to ensure that the future is not a continuation of the past.
“I believe in a future of peace, security and stability, and I believe in the possibility of peace,” Yaalon was quoted as saying by Haaretz newspaper.
“There are certain circumstances in which it’s appropriate to carry out an operation.
And, to be honest, we have to accept the fact that the situation is dangerous and that we have an enemy that will try to harm us.
So we have the right to do it.”
The minister, who was recently appointed defense minister, made the remarks during an interview conducted during his first trip abroad in almost two years, after the government’s peace talks with the Palestinians failed to yield a final peace agreement.
The ministers comments come amid renewed tensions between Israel and the Palestinians following the deadly stabbing attack on an Israeli military patrol near the Gaza border on March 28 that left two soldiers dead and several others injured.
A few days later, Yaalon called for an end to “armed aggression” in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and for the Palestinian leadership to take responsibility for the attack.
“It is time to stop blaming the victims for the actions of terrorists,” Yaacob said.
“We must accept responsibility and take responsibility, not just for the deaths of our soldiers, but for the destruction of their lives.
This is what the state of Israel stands for.”
On Wednesday, Yaacobs office released a statement that accused the Palestinian Authority of failing to take adequate measures to stop the escalation in violence.
“The Palestinian Authority continues to refuse to take concrete action to stop or deter attacks by the terrorist groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the Occupied Territories,” the statement read.
“The Palestinian leadership is the real enemy of peace in the region, and continues to incite and support terrorism.”
According to a statement from the Israeli military, the attack on the Israeli soldiers occurred on a patrol near a Palestinian village near the northern West Bank city of Jenin on the outskirts of Bethlehem.
According to the military, two of the soldiers were killed and four others were wounded in the attack, which left the Palestinian leader’s car riddled with bullets.
A short time later, another soldier was injured when a Palestinian man tried to set his car on fire near the scene of the attack and was taken to the hospital.
The injured man died later that day.
In a statement to The Associated Press on Thursday, the Palestinian ministry of foreign affairs called on the United Nations Security Council to “immediately condemn” the attack as “an affront to all humanity and international law.”
The Palestinian security forces, however, did not immediately respond to the AP’s request for comment.