IDF statements on
After more than 1,500 airstrikes on terror targets in Gaza and more than 1,000 rockets launched toward Israel, Operation Pillar of Defense has come to a close: A ceasefire between Israel and Hamas went into effect at 9 pm Wednesday. In the last-minute burst of fire, Palestinian terrorists fired several bursts of rockets at south Israel, while the IDF responded with airstrikes and artillery fire on Gaza.
Rocket were fired toward Beersheba and the Bnei Shimon Regional Council just seconds before the truce took effect, and some projectiles were launched after the truce took effect.
IDF Spokesman Brigadier-General Yoav Mordechai confirmed that the ceasefire had taken effect at 9 pm in accordance with the political echelon's instructions. "The IDF has stopped firing at the Strip and will open fire only if our forces are put in danger," he said.
The IDF spokesman added that a decision on whether to release the reserve forces would be made on Thursday.
"The operation's goals have been achieved. Hamas suffered a serious blow and is in a great amount of distress. After the organization's leaders come out from their hiding places, they will see the extent of destruction. We understand from intelligence sources that Hamas is in distress."
According to Mordechai, time will tell what the deterrence did to Hamas. "We'll know within weeks or months. The chief of staff is in the south, issuing orders to the forces. We are alert and ready."
Posted by: Steve White 2012-11-22