Several politicians too advantage of the relative calm in south Israel
on Wednesday to visit the region. One of them, President Shimon Peres,
called on the international community to halt the transfer of funds to the Gaza Strip
in light of the incessant rocket attacks.
Speaking at a religious school in Sderot, Peres referred to the situation in the south as "shocking inequality," adding that "from a security standpoint Israel cannot accept a 'twilight' situation. If they want war, then there will be war. If they want peace, there will be peace. But we can't have both."
The president urged a halt to the transfer of funds to Hamas-ruled Gaza as long as the rocket fire on Israel persists. "Hamas is solely responsible for this intolerable situation of rocket fire at Israel. Hamas should control all the other organizations operating under its nose with its tacit approval," he said.
"We must cease the constant flow of funds to Gaza, funds which are channeled directly to rockets and terror. The countries of the world that in their self-righteousness transfer funds to Gaza, led by the Emir of Qatar, cannot continue to do so. The world must see the reality that money in Gaza equals terror," the president said.
Speaking to the students, Peres said "I am here as a grandfather who feels the pain of the mothers who can't sleep quietly at night. You should know that you are a source of strength and courage for all the people of Israel. All the children in Israel are proud of you. You are brave children who live in an abnormal reality. I know how hard it is not to sleep at night, how hard it is for your mothers and how much you want to lead a normal life.
"The State of Israel must listen to the children in this region and protect them," he said, while emphasizing that the residents of the south must be treated equally and that shelters for all the residents must be completed without any delay.