Israel Defense Force (IDF)

Army chief says Gaza deal for calm is working, violence along border is down

Israel’s top general said on Friday an unofficial deal with Gazan terrorists for calm along the border was proving effective, but appeared to warn that the army would not let Palestinians launch arson balloons into Israel indefinitely.

Army Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Aviv Kohavi made the comments to the heads of communities near the normally restive Gaza border.

The meeting was his first with them since he became the head of the Israel Defense Forces earlier this year.

Kohavi said there had been a decrease in the number of incendiary devices flown into Israel and violence along the border fence had calmed significantly from earlier this year, when clashes between protesting Palestinians and Israeli troops had been a near-daily occurrence.

“The decrease… is not coincidental,” he said, according to Hebrew-language media. “Right now, we prefer to give the arrangement a chance.”

Despite several fires in the area being blamed on incendiary devices attached to balloons launched into Israel from Gaza, the region has not seen any major bouts of fighting since a since a deadly two-day flare-up in early May that saw almost 700 rockets fired into Israel and hundreds of retaliatory airstrikes.

Read More: Times of Israel