TEL AVIV, August 8. /TASS/. All goals that Israel pursued in the Operation Breaking Dawn in Gaza were achieved as the leaders of the Islamic Jihad terrorist group were killed, Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said in a televised address to the nation on Monday.
"Operation Breaking Dawn gave Israel back the initiative. It brought back Israeli deterrence. All of our goals were achieved. The entire military elite of the Islamic Jihad in Gaza was routed within three days. The strength and sophistication of the IDF dealt the enemy a devastating blow," he said.
The prime minister said that at the same time as the Operation Breaking Dawn an extensive operation to arrest Islamic Jihad operatives on the Western Bank of the Jordan River was conducted. "The Israeli government continued its strong policy of zero tolerance towards terrorism. Whoever tries to harm us will pay with his life," he said.
Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz also addressed the nation following the prime minister, saying the country’s troops will maintain high readiness and be ready to make a preemptive strike on any enemy including Iran.
"If it becomes necessary, we will launch a preemptive strike in the future as well to protect the citizens of Israel, its sovereignty and its infrastructure," he said.
Israel started Operation Breaking Dawn against the Islamic Jihad in Gaza on August 5. The radicals fired 1,100 missiles on Israel within the 56 hours that the operation lasted. The Israeli army hit 170 military targets of the group. A ceasefire, which Egypt helped to broker, went into effect on August 7. Israel reserved the right to use force if the ceasefire is violated.