Amid talk of annexation, IDF chief warns of outbreak of violence in West Bank

IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi warns Israel could soon see an outbreak of violence in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, as the July 1 date for Israel’s planned annexation of West Bank settlements and the Jordan Valley nears.

In comments at a military exercise in the north, Kohavi addresses the IDF’s decision to tighten coronavirus-related restrictions amid a national rise in new infections.

“We must remain ready. Citizens can be at home in quarantine, the IDF cannot. From what I see here, the level of fighting is good and is naturally aimed toward… Hezbollah in the north, and Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip,” he’s quoted saying in an IDF statement.

While not directly mentioning annexation, Kohavi warns of violent unrest in the West Bank, which he says can spill over to Gaza.

“You could find yourself in a few weeks in the area of Judea and Samaria, because of riots and terror,” he says, using the biblical names of the West Bank. “The upcoming events can develop into fighting in Gaza.”

Alexander Fulbright

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