The Israeli Chief of Staff, General Mordechai Gur revealed to newsmen on Thursday (27th June) that a close security fence is being set up along Israel's border with Lebanon, to prevent guerrilla attacks.
SV PAN FROM newsmen TO General Gur at news conference (2 shots)
CU Israeli Officer at conference table
Mostly along the borders, they didn't behave in such a way that they just came in without any difference - just killed people - women, children and so on. That's a new system since Kiryat Shmoneh. They did something like that in Lydda, they did something like that with the planes, but not with our population here in their own places. This is a very drastic change. That forces us to close the border almost hermetic because any penetration might cause a lot of losses. So this is a difference. We've learned a lesson. It's quite difficult to close their border hermetic but we can try at least, and that's what we do. That's about the defensive aspect of things. About the offensive aspect. Because of the success we had in the past in our big operations along the border, the Lebanese border, we pushed the terrorists back into the big cities and the refugee camps. If I remember well during '69, '70, '71, they had many places, just along the border. We destroyed most of them and the others they left alone. They evacuated them. So now we have to choose systems and means to hit them where they are and that's what we do. The air raids are one way of course I'ma not going to close all the other ways, I just feel free to say that we'll try our best to find the methods and a time to prevent them from executing what they are aiming to.
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A transcription of part of General Gur's speech at the news conference is provided below.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Israeli Chief of Staff, General Mordechai Gur revealed to newsmen on Thursday (27th June) that a close security fence is being set up along Israel's border with Lebanon, to prevent guerrilla attacks. The general also said that Israel's past activity along the border had forced the guerrillas to abandon their positions near the frontier and retreat to the cities and Palestinian refugee camps.
Even in the south-east corner of Lebanon, known as Fatahland, they had withdrawn, he said. Israel has continued to raid them however, both from the air and with artillery over past months.
Since April 11th, 51 Israelis, mainly women and children, and 17 guerrillas have been killed in guerrilla attacks. Some 80 people have been wounded and at least two guerrillas have been captured.