Liberman offers Hamas airport, seaport in exchange for quiet

Defense Minister says Israel willing to build international airport, seaport, industrial zone in Gaza if Hamas ends tunnels, rocket fire.

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Uzi Baruch,

Avigdor Liberman
Avigdor Liberman
Miriam Alster/Flash 90

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beytenu) presented an offer to the Hamas regime in Gaza on Thursday, with a proposed quid pro quo between Israel and the Gaza Strip.

In a video interview released on Thursday, Liberman suggested Gaza residents could live under the same conditions which prevail in Judea and Samaria or the greater Arab world, but are instead suffering because of the actions of the Hamas terror organization.

Noting that Israel had evacuated some 10,000 Jews from the Gaza Strip and removed all civilian and military enclaves there, Liberman argued that Hamas, not the Jewish state, was responsible for the difficult conditions in Gaza.

Should Hamas cease its attacks on Israel and efforts to build terror tunnels into Israeli territory, the Defense Minister added, Israel would be willing to invest in the construction of sea and airports, as well as industrial zones, in the Gaza Strip.

“The second that Hamas gives up on the [terror] tunnels and rockets, we will be the first to invest and build for them both a seaport and airport, as well as an industrial zone – both in Kerem Shalom and in Erez,” referring to border areas near crossing points into Israel.

“We could immediately create 40,000 jobs for Gaza residents, assuming Hamas gives up its [charter] article [calling for “the destruction of the State of Israel”, gives up on the tunnels, gives up on the rockets, and, of course – and this is the first and most important thing – returns the bodies of our soldiers and returns our civilians being held captive.”