Jerusalem: Warning against the rising tide of extremism, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday said fundamentalists groups Islamic State, Hamas, al-Qaeda, the Nusra Front, Boko Haram and Hezbollah, supported by Iran, as "branches of the same poisonous tree".
"IS and Hamas and al-Qaeda and al-Nusra and Boko Haram and Hezbollah, supported by Iran - they're branches of the same poisonous tree. It's the same ideology with minor nuances," Netanyahu said while speaking to a visiting Israel Bonds Leadership Delegation.
"What's the great difference between IS and Hamas? The great difference, supposedly, between IS and Hamas is that those, the former lop heads off and the others shoot people in the head," the Israeli Premier said.
Netanyahu also sent his condolences to the British people over the loss of David Haines, the British aid worker who was beheaded by the IS, as seen in a video released today.
"We have been notified of another act of savagery from IS and I send our condolences to the people of Britain. We understand what kind of barbarism they face", he said.
The Israeli Premier also stressed that?the threats spreading in the area were also posing a challenge to Israel's defence at its own borders.
"We need a very strong defence against them. We need a strong army and also a strong economy. Achieving a balance between them is one of the central goals before us and I intend to achieve both strong security and a strong economy," Netanyahu said.
Israel has officially banned terror group IS as an "unauthorised organisation", providing the legal framework to prevent efforts by the Jihadi group to spread its presence in Israel and the West Bank.
"This is necessary for the purpose of protecting state security, the public welfare and public order," Defence Minister Moshe Ya'alon said about ten days ago.
Israel's pro-active approach in this regard is meant to enable authorities to halt the transfer of funds to any local groups affiliated with IS and take legal action against its members or operatives.