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Blinken vs. Netanyahu on Gaza’s future: ‘No Israeli control’

Blinken Netanyahu

Biden administration staunchly against Israel maintaining post-war military control in the Strip.

By World Israel News Staff

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Secretary of State Antony Blinken are clashing on the issue of Gaza’s post-war governance, with the American official stressing that the Strip must be a self-governing entity without Israeli control.

“When it comes to the future of Gaza, we do not support and will not support an Israeli reoccupation,” Blinken said at a press conference on Wednesday.

Blinken emphasized that he does not want Hamas to be in control of the Strip after the fighting ends, but that he is also opposed to Israeli rule in the territory.

He blamed Netanyahu for not producing a viable alternative to Hamas for governance in Gaza, saying that the terror group’s absence could form a power vaccum.

“That only underscores the imperative of having a clear, concrete plan for the day after the conflict in Gaza – in terms of governance, in terms of security, in terms of rebuilding Gaza for its people. And here it would be important for Israel to focus on that as well,” he said.

Netanyahu, however, has made it clear that he envisions that the Israeli army will maintain military control over the coastal enclave for the coming years, while a separate Palestinian entity will govern civil matters.

Installing the Palestinian Authority to govern the Strip is unacceptable, Netanyahu told Hebrew-language media.

“I’m unwilling to go from Hamas-stan for Fatah-stan,” he said, using the Arabic name for the PA.

Netanyahu told CNBC that he had pushed for local Gazan clans, unaffiliated with Hamas to begin spearheading projects in the Strip, including food distribution.

“This attempt has not been successful because Hamas has threatened them and even hurt some of them in order to deter others,” he said.

Planning for post-war Gaza is impossible as long as Hamas is present in the Strip, Netanyahu asserted.

“Until it is clear that Hamas does not control Gaza militarily, nobody will be prepared to take upon himself the civil management of Gaza out of fear for their lives,” he said.

“Therefore, all the talk about ‘the day-after’, while Hamas stays remains intact, will remain” lip service.

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