'We won't pay in blood so that Abbas can return to Gaza'

Likud MK says reconciliation between Hamas, Palestinian Authority, doubtful, Israel won't pay for PA to take control of Gaza.

Hezki Baruch,

MK Anat Berko
MK Anat Berko
Miriam Alster/Flash 90

MK Anat Berko (Likud) on Monday morning responded to the reports that Israel had agreed to a peace agreement with Gaza.

"If anyone thinks that Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas would come to Gaza thanks to the IDF's weapons, he's making a huge mistake," she said. "All agreements with Gaza are made via Egypt."

"If you pay attention, the entire ceasefire, the entire agreement in Gaza....is all via Egypt. The Rafah crossing is the opening from Gaza to the Arab world, and that's where the Gazans are directed to and belong. Therefore, if an airport and seaport are built for Gaza, their construction is planned for Egypt. That way, they can work to rehabilitate Gaza and also help the crumbling Egyptian economy."

Berko also noted that an agreement with Hamas does not equal peace for Israel.

"The real danger is that Hamas will use the time of calm to strengthen itself for the next round [of fighting]," Berko said. "If Hamas continues terror of any kind: incendiary kites and balloons, or even a burning candle...we cannot overlook anything, not even the smallest thing. Compromise and restraint whet Hamas' 'appetite' for terror against us, and harm our deterrence."

She emphasized, "It doesn't seem like there will be a true reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah in the foreseeable future. At the end of the day, Abbas thinks that the IDF will do all the work in Gaza for him, but we have no intention of paying with our soldiers' blood for the Fatah to return to Gaza."

Fatah is the ruling party in the Palestinian Authority.

"The entire subject of an agreement with Gaza must include the release of the two soldiers, [Oron] Shaul and [Hadar] Goldin, and of our civilians," Berko added. "Make no mistake, this issue is at the top of the Prime Minister's priority list. The issue of the captive and missing comes up in many discussions and meetings with the Prime Minister. We will not forget our soldiers and our civilians who are in Hamas' hands. We have a moral obligation to release them as soon as possible."


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