Peres Jerusalem 16.2.11 Reuters
President Shimon Peres addressing a meeting of the Conference of President of Major American Jewish Organizations in Jerusalem, February 16, 2011. Photo by Reuters
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President Shimon Peres said Thursday that Gaza has turned into a terror state, after militants from the coastal enclave fired an anti-tank missile at a bus carrying children in southern Israel several hours earlier, wounding two people.

"I was just informed that an Israeli bus carrying students from school was hit by a missile fired from Gaza. This is another example of how Gaza has turned into a terror state," Peres told UN Security Council ambassadors during a visit to New York.

"Can the United Nations guarantee that terrorist acts will not happen? None of you would give up on the security of your country, and Israel will also defend itself," he said.

"Hundreds of thousands of mothers and children in southern Israel cannot sleep peacefully at night as a result of the rocket fire from Gaza," Peres told the UN ambassadors.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also responded to the attack during his meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Germany, saying Israel has no intention on tolerating terror attacks that no other country would tolerate.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak, who instructed IDF forces to attack targets in the Gaza Strip in response to the attack on the bus, said he holds Hamas responsible for any attack originating from the Gaza Strip.