Livni: Gov't policy preserving Hamas rule

Opposition Leader Tzipi Livni slams government's policy vis a vis Hamas, welcomes High Court ruling admitting BDS advocate into Israel.

Tzvi Lev,

Tzipi Livni
Tzipi Livni
Hadas Parush/Flash 90

Opposition Leader MK Tzipi Livni (Zionist Union) blasted the government's handling of the recent flare-up in Gaza and alleged that its current policy was "preserving the rule of Hamas".

Speaking at the Israel Bar Association's conference in Eilat on Saturday, Livni said that the coalition was "moving from a stated policy of defeating Hamas, which has failed, to a hidden policy of preserving its rule.”

“The government is choosing the worst option because it is the least politically risky," added Livni. "Israel is conducting indirect negotiations with Hamas instead of conducting direct talks with the Palestinian Authority."

Livni also welcomed the High Court's decision on Thursday permitting BDS advocate Lara Alqasem to enter Israel.

"[Alqasem] is an insignificant figure, and the damage caused to the State of Israel from the affair is greater than any damage she could ever have done to Israel itself," contended Livni. "What do we have to hide? Where is self-confidence? The BDS does not accept the existence of Israel, that's how I convinced the world against them and that's how we have to act, with intelligence."

The court had ruled Thursday evening against the state’s position that Alqasem is prohibited from entering the country under Israel’s anti-BDS law, which bars non-citizen supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement from visiting Israel.

Alqasem, 22, had served as the chapter president of the anti-Israel group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) during her undergraduate studies at the University of Florida. SJP is known for its staunch support of the BDS movement.

Following her graduation from the University of Florida, Alqasem applied for and received a student visa from Israel, enabling her to take part in a master’s degree program at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

Upon her arrival in Israel on October 2nd, however, Alqasem was detained by border control authorities, who barred her entry under Israel’s anti-BDS law.