Staff Sgt. Omer Benjo killed in Hezbollah rocket attack in Safed

Benjo hurt while running for shelter amid attack on Safed; eight other soldiers also injured including one reservist in critical condition; In response, IDF launched attacks in Lebanon, specifically targeting the Radwan force

Hezbollah rocket attack on Safed

Staff Sergeant Omer Sarah Benjo, a 20-year-old soldier from Moshav Ge'a near Ashkelon, was killed on Wednesday in a rocket attack targeting the IDF Northern Command in Safed. Benjo was just one month away from completing her military service.
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Hadas, her mother said she was unable to believe what had happened. "I can't believe that the knock on the door reached me too." Since the beginning of the conflict, a total of 570 IDF soldiers have been killed, 233 of them since the ground offensive began.
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סמ"ר עמר שרה בנג'ו ז"ל
סמ"ר עמר שרה בנג'ו ז"ל
Staff Sergeant Omer Sarah Benjo
(Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Although she had nearly completed her compulsory service, Benjo said she wanted to stay on in the reserves since the war had not ended.
"Afterwards, she wanted to embark on travels and pursue studies in civil engineering," Karni-Bahar her high school teacher said. "She was an exceptional young woman, particularly gifted in physics and mathematics. She possessed a boundless heart, encompassing the entire world."
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סמ"ר עמר שרה בנג'ו ז"ל
סמ"ר עמר שרה בנג'ו ז"ל
Staff Sergeant Omer Sarag Benjo
The Iron Dome failed to intercept some of the rockets fired by Hezbollah in their heavy barrage targeting Safed. The IDF said they were investigating how the rockets evaded the missile defense system. Benjo was on her way to a shelter from the barracks area when she was hit by the missile, as were the soldiers who were wounded near her.
IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevy conducted a situation assessment with commanders on the Lebanon border soon after the strike. "We will not finish this without returning the residents to normalcy and to all the communities in the north with a very high level of security," " Halevi said. "Even when you go home, the mission is to think about readiness for war. That is our first task, and we are now focusing on being prepared for war in the north. In the end, we will be ready for war. If it doesn't end in war, it won't end in compromise on the achievements."
In response to the rocket barrage on the base in Safed, IDF conducted a series of extensive attacks inside Lebanon. Targets included facilities associated with Hezbollah's Radwan force, military structures, combat personnel, and terrorist infrastructure. According to an IDF spokesperson, these strikes resulted in at least four deaths, including a woman and two children.
Since the beginning of the conflict, approximately 200 Hezbollah operatives and around 50 terrorists from other organizations have been killed. The head of Hezbollah's executive council issued a threat in response to the attacks, stating, "If there are those who believe they can achieve goals they failed to accomplish in 2006, they are mistaken."
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 הרמטכ"ל הרצי הלוי  בהערכת מצב בגבול הצפוני
 הרמטכ"ל הרצי הלוי  בהערכת מצב בגבול הצפוני
IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevy conducted a situation assessment
(Photo: IDF Spokesperson's Unit)
Minister Benny Gantz, a member of the war cabinet and the leader of the National Unity Party said those who harm Israel cannot escape harm. "It is crucial to understand that those responsible for the shooting from Lebanon are not limited to Hezbollah or terrorist elements alone. The responsibility also lies with the Lebanese government and the state of Lebanon, as they enable these attacks," he said.
" We do not overlook any target or military infrastructure in the northern region of Lebanon. Moving forward, regardless of any future arrangements, we will take operational measures against those who pose a threat to us. We are not willing to return to the reality of October 6, neither in the south nor in the north."
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