Photo; Reuters
Sharon. Special consultation
Photo; Reuters
Photo: AP
Peretz. 'Continue war against terrorists'
Photo: AP
Photo: AFP
Shalom. 'Palestinian Authority's helplessness'
Photo: AFP
Photo: Yaron Brenner
Scene of attack
Photo: Yaron Brenner
PM to hold consultation following attack
Sharon receives information on Netanya bombing minutes after ending speech in business conference; expected to hold special consultation with heads of defense establishment
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is expected to hold a special security consultation Monday at his Tel Aviv office following the terror attack in Netanya.


Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz, IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz and senior officials of the defense establishment are expected to take part in the meeting.


At this stage, defense officials and the Prime Minister's Office are examining the details of the incident.


According to initial estimates, Islamic Jihad is responsible for the attack, following intelligence warnings of the organization's attempts to execute terror attacks in Israel.


The prime minister received the news about the attack a number of minutes after ending his social-economic speech at the Israel Business Conference in Tel Aviv and was on his way back to his Jerusalem office.


In spite of the attack, Sharon is still expected to hold a meeting with Kadima faction members at the Knesset Monday afternoon.


Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz received reports on the attack at his Tel Aviv office. He said that he would not attend the Likud faction meeting Monday and is expected to hold a special consultation in order to discuss the attack.


'Strongly fight terror' 


Labor Chairman Amir Peretz said in response to the attack that "We must strongly fight terror, which is the enemy of democracy, of peace and of the Israeli society."


"We will continue the war against the terrorists and their dispatchers," he said.


Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom charged that the responsibility for the attack lies in what he defined as "the helplessness of the

Palestinian Authority, headed by Mahmoud Abbas."


According to Shalom, "Israel will no longer tolerate the bloodshed in its city streets and the firing of Qassams. The Palestinian Authority leadership has refrained from operating against the terror organizations and has not dismantled their weapons, allowing them to freely continue with their murderous acts."


Education Minister Limor Livnat said that "The restraint policy in response to the firing of Qassams, without any Israeli retaliation, encourages bigger terror attacks."


MK Mohammad Barakeh (Hadash-Ta'al) strongly condemned the terror attack in Netanya "directed at innocent citizens."


Barakeh added that "The attack came at a time when the defense minister announced the renewal of the targeted killing policy, drawing the region into a spiral of blood."


"Beyond the condemnation, there is no doubt that the Netanya attack serves the Israeli Right," he said.


'Sharon has forgotten he is prime minister'


Yesha Council said in response to the attacks that "once again it appears the farm group has led us towards an abyss. Whoever initiated and carried out the fleeing plan gave away free gifts to the Palestinians and provided them with a space to operate, which encourages terror organizations to continue their murderous activities."


"The shameful uprooting has strengthened Hamas and Islamic Jihad and brought us to a renewed blood bath," the statement said.


Several sources within the council called for the defense establishment to "severely respond without sensitivity to Palestinian terror."


MK Chemi Doron (Shinui) said in response to the bombing that "Sharon has been busy day and night building his dream team, forgetting that he is first and foremost the prime minister who must care for the residents of the State of Israel."


"I call on the prime minister to aggressively and systematically operate against the terror groups, regardless of the special political situation we are in," Doron said.


Nentanya Mayor Miriam Fierberg called on the police and the government to defend the people of Netanya.


"They should treat us like any other border community," she said.


"I have no complaints to the government, but it should help Netanya as it has helped communities in other regions in the country," she added.


Hanan Greenberg, Attila Somfalvi and Ilan Marciano contributed to the report


פרסום ראשון: 12.05.05, 13:22
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