Photo: Eliad Levy
Damaged house in Netivot
Photo: Eliad Levy

Netivot residents say they live in fear

Anxiety in southern city grows following removal of local Iron Dome battery; recent rocket fire on homes. 'Government must protect us,' they implore

The absence of the Iron Dome battery near Netivot was sorely felt on Monday after a rocket hit the yard of a private residence in the city, causing serious property damage. Twenty-six people suffered shock.


The level of anxiety in the city, which suffers from a lack of shelter, has risen greatly over the past few days, as the recent escalation in the south has seen Gaza terrorists' fire target the city more than once.


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"School buildings are safer, since we don't have a shelter at home and the schools have fortified facilities. Our kids know by now that when they hear a Color Red alert they have to run to a safe area," said Sima Cohen, mother of four.


Eithan, a father of two, also decided to send his children to school despite the security situation: "We have to maintain our normal routine… both the kids and the adults are scared, but if I leave the kids at home their fears will only increase. Part of dealing with the situation is getting back on track as soon as possible," he said.  


נזק רב בנתיבות, הבוקר (צילום: שי פרץ)

Rocket damage in Netivot (Photo: Shai Peretz)


Anat Asulin, a mother of two teenagers, decided it was best to have them stay at home. "You don't send your kids to school on days like this. The school is not fully protected… both my kids suffered a panic attack after the rocket exploded. We beg the government to give us some piece of mind and return Iron Dome to Netivot," she told Ynet.


The missile defense system's battery stationed near the city was recently redeployed elsewhere in the southern sector.


"It seems like the southern district is well prepared and provides a professional response to the complex situation we're in," Recently-appointed Southern Police District Chief Commander Yoram Halevi said.


"The residents of the south deserve every praise for their resilience. This isn’t something an outsider could understand," he added.


Hopes of a possible Egypt-brokered ceasefire were shaken Monday morning, when a rocket barrage hit south and Gaza vicinity communities.


Five rockets were fired from Gaza at the Hof Ashkelon Regional Council. One was intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system. Three mortar shells hit open areas in the Eshkol Regional Council moments later. No damage or injuries were reported.


The IAF struck a terror tunnel and a weapons cache in northern Gaza overnight, as well as a rocket launching site in the Strip's south.


Ilana Curiel contributed to this report




פרסום ראשון: 11.12.12, 18:19
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