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Southern residents fed up with Qassams
Photo: AP
Gaza-region mayors to Olmert: do something about Qassams
Seven southern municipal leaders send harsh letter to Prime Minister Olmert, urge him to take urgent action in face of ongoing rocket attacks; 'we have waited patiently, sustained attacks quietly, but no more,' letter reads

No more: Seven municipal leaders from Israel's south sent a harsh letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert Tuesday, urging him to act against ongoing rocket attacks sustained by southern communities.

 

"Until today we showed restrained, waited patiently, bit our lips, sounded warnings, calmed our residents, and sustained attack quietly – no more," the letter reads.

 

The municipal leaders stressed that they view the government as responsible for the security of residents, and noted that they feel as though they are asked to show restraint and wait that because they live in peripheral areas.

 

"We have been watching with concern the ongoing process of erosion of residents' social, national, and mental strength; some carry mental traumas and suffer from shock and anxiety, others had their limbs severed…and some joined the family of the bereaved."

 

'Ministers don't deliver on promises'

The municipal leaders, which include the mayors of Sderot, Ashkelon and Netivot, decided to send the letter in a meeting Sunday, where they also agreed to join forces in order to lift the rocket threat faced by southern residents. On Monday, 21 representatives of area kibbutzim also met and decided to coordinate their protest efforts.

 

The municipal leaders demand that Olmert stop the rocket attacks immediately and say that they will back any operation that would end the attacks.

Haim Yalin, who heads the Eshkol regional council, told Ynet that southern residents have lost their patience.

 

"I'm quite skeptical and despaired," he said. "I spoke with the prime minister, the defense minister, and with other ministers, and they tell us things and make promises, and later sit around the government table and do the exact opposite. At times I wonder whether we need to bring some kind of outside consultant from overseas to explain to them what's going on here."

 

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