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Israeli Druze warn: don't stop us from aiding Hader
Druze residents in Majdal Shams express their anger over IDF's decision to stop them from crossing border to help fellow Druze village following terror attack; Druze Majdal Shams resident: 'the Israeli government is playing with fire.'

Riots near near Majdal Shams over Friday's attack on the Syrian Druze village of Hader have subsided, but emotions of Druze residents are still in turmoil as they continue blaming Israel for supporting the village's attackers, saying that stopping them again from crossing the border to help their bretheren will only focus their anger on the state.

 

 

"We are not hurting anyone, nor will we remain silent over this attack on us," said Ali Abu Jaber, a resident of Majdal Shams. "The terrorists from Al-Nusra Front, with the help of their Israeli partners, penetrated the village from all directions and began firing at people.

 

"If this attack repeats itself, then Israel will be certain that we will remove the security fence and enter the village to protect them, and no one can stop us."

 

Druze demonstration following Friday's attack (Photo: AFP)
Druze demonstration following Friday's attack (Photo: AFP)

He added that "Israel supports Al-Nusra Front. The day will come when this organization will harm Israel. They are like ISIS. They don't accept Druze, nor Muslims, nor Christians, only Muslims of their kind.

 

"Thank God, the residents there, together with our support, overcame them and foiled their plans. It's true that martyrs fell, but in the end they survived."

 

If this attack repeats itself, then Israel will be certain that we will remove the security fence and enter the village to protect them, and no one can stop us."

 

Hassan Fajr al-Din, also a resident of Majdal Shams, reinforced Abu Jaber's words.

 

"The terrorists from Al-Nusra Front tried to conquer the village of Hader. They shot and murdered residents," he said. "We stood at the fence to support our keen, and to convey a message to Israel that supports them. We will not allow anyone to harm the village.

 

"If this happens once more many people will come and break through the fence by force in order to help the residents of Hader."

 

Druze protesters at the border fence (Photo: AFP)
Druze protesters at the border fence (Photo: AFP)

 

"What happened today is very serious," said another Druze resident who asked to remain anonymous. "This time we did not do enough. Next time we will cross the border. If the police try to stop us or shoot us, then we too will use weapons. They should not try us, otherwise the war will be braught here.

 

"The Israeli government is playing with fire. It needs to stop supporting terrorist organizations."

 

Another resident asserted: "I personally am willing to sacrifice my life for the sake of the residents of Hader. Any harm to them hurts us greatly. We will not calm down as long as there are attempts to conquer the village. Any damage to it is a red line that could inflame the whole area.

 

"It will not be an easy war, but I'll be the first to cross the border. Ready to give up children and family and friends but not let them occupy lands. "

 

IDF forces deployed near Syrian border to stop crossings (Photo: AFP)
IDF forces deployed near Syrian border to stop crossings (Photo: AFP)

 

After the attack on the village, hundreds of Druze from the Israeli side of the border rioted near Majdal Shams.

 

The IDF said the rioters broke through a gate in the border fence and ten of them came within several dozen meters of the fence. IDF forces gave pursuit and returned the Druze protesters to Israeli territory. The rioters were handed over to the police, which will decide whether to further detain them.

 

The near break-through, the first since the May 2011 riots to succeed despite the new, double fence built on the border, came on the heels of an particularly tense day that started with a suicide bombing in Hader, claiming the lives of at least nine and wounding 23 when al-Nusra Front terrorists detonated a car bomb there.

 

The riots in Majdal Shams escalated further when some of the village's residents found out their relatives were murdered in Hader.

 

In light of the Syrian accusations levied against the IDF for supposedly helping rebel forces carry out the suicide attack in Hader, the army published an extraordinary announcement Friday saying it was "Ready and willing to assist the people of the village and would prevent Hader from being harmed or occupied out of a sense of commitment to the Druze people."

 

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