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Official: Israel to allow Gaza rebuilding in exchange for disarmament
Published Tuesday 05/08/2014 (updated) 08/08/2014 16:08
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BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israel is willing to agree to the rebuilding of the Gaza Strip in exchange for the disarmament of militant groups there, an official said Tuesday.

Ofer Gendelman told Ma’an that the Israeli government linked the rebuilding of Gaza with disarming factions in the coastal enclave.

Gendelman said that Israel was interested in achieving a lasting ceasefire, but he insisted that it was dependent on Hamas' respect of the current 72-hour truce.

The Israeli assault in Gaza has caused severe damage to the infrastructure in Gaza. Over 10,000 houses, government buildings, universities, mosques, and schools were damaged in a month-long assault.

Also Tuesday, three remaining members of a Palestinian delegation negotiating a longer-term truce in Gaza were on their way to Cairo after entering Egypt through the Rafah crossing, state media reported.

Israel and Hamas halted their fighting in Gaza from 8 a.m. Tuesday after a three-day temporary truce brokered by Cairo went into effect.

Israel also withdrew its troops from the coastal enclave.

The three Palestinian leaders who entered Egypt were Islamic Jihad member Khaled al-Batsh and senior Hamas officials Khalil al-Haya and Emad El-Elmy, said the official MENA news agency.

A joint Palestinian delegation representing President Mahmoud Abbas' Palestinian Authority, Hamas and Islamic Jihad has been in Cairo for the past few days at Egypt's invitation.

Israel earlier refused to send its negotiators, but an official said Tuesday that a team representing it was on its way to Cairo.

The main demands proposed to Egyptian mediators by the Palestinian delegation are a ceasefire, the withdrawal of Israeli troops from Gaza, the end of the siege of the enclave, and opening its border crossings.

They have also demanded fishing rights up to 12 nautical miles off Gaza's coast and the release of Palestinian prisoners demanded by Hamas and Abbas.

Egyptian mediators are to forward these demands to the Israelis.

Israel's assault on Gaza has killed over 1,800 Palestinians and injured at least 9,000. Gaza's deputy economy minister Taysir Amro said Tuesday that the assault has caused at least $4-6 billion in damages.

Sixty-four Israeli soldiers have been killed and three Israeli civilians.

The majority of those killed in Gaza are civilians, according to UN agencies.

AFP contributed to this report.
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1 ) JoeFattal / USA
05/08/2014 23:28
I wont even trust Israel in peace time how can anyone trust them in wartime.

2 ) Brian Cohen / Israel
05/08/2014 23:53
You Gazans can have open borders, free trade zones, wall-to-wall mosques or wall-to-wall hi-tech or wall-to-wall shopping malls. You can have a sea port and and airport and a 12-lane superhighway to Cairo or Doha if you want. You can have $100 billion in foreign aid until you become whatever the hell you want to be...except jihadists. We Israelis are happy to totally open the borders (well, with Egypt at least) and let you do what you want. Just no weapons, cuz you abuse them.

3 ) Outlier / USA
06/08/2014 00:32
Hamas may feel duty bound not to accept this deal. It and all Gazans should recognize that - failing its acceptance - the next time Israel goes to war with Gaza, it will continue the conflict until Gaza is leveled. Compassion for Hamas' wanton destruction of Gaza through precipitating conflict with Israel are at an end internationally. Gaza either will change now, or suffer the consequences later.

4 ) Maureen / Australia
06/08/2014 00:55
And the glut of (mostly US) WMD, occupation of Palestine, land theft aparthid?

5 ) Arnold / Canada
06/08/2014 01:41
Hamas better be flexible in their demands. The only thing I see agreeing to is expanding the fishing waters. There are not enough hours in this truce for all that.

6 ) Mark of Lewiston / USA
06/08/2014 01:50
Israel should pay every dime of rebuilding. Israel destroyed it and plans to control the strip. Israel is the de facto occupying authority so long as they control anything. The expense is theirs and theirs alone.

7 ) Tilly / India
06/08/2014 02:07
Blackmail from Israel again. Why not everyone disarm? Oops sorry Israel wouldn't do that because as we have seen the only one doing all the killing armed to teeth by the money of Americans whilst they financially suffer is ISRAEL!

8 ) Robin / US
06/08/2014 02:10
Yeah right so Israel can go around killing at whim. ISRAEL SHOULD DISARM!

9 ) Mel / USA
06/08/2014 02:22
Excuse me? ISRAEL'S OCCUPATION & collective punishment on Gaza & WB,is the BIG WAR CRIME here.The reason why Gaza's resistance has weapons,AS IS THEIR RIGHT vs. OCCUPYING RACIST TYRANNY.Israel asks Gaza to STOP resisting occupation/blockade,to build houses that WILL BE BOMBED AGAIN,ANY TIME ISRAEL feels like it? ISRAEL DOES NOT HAVE THE RIGHT TO MILITARILY OCCUPY ANYWHERE & TREAT OCCUPIED people as disposable,OR EXPECT THEM TO SURRENDER TO OCCUPATION. Israel's THE DESTROYER,with WMD's,here!DUH!

10 ) Robert / US TAXPAYER
06/08/2014 02:39
Fuck you israel !! get out or the occupied terrorizes , you theives, get back to 1947 agreement, thugs and be happy with that ...

11 ) Parvez Ali / UK
06/08/2014 02:46
It's okay the ceasefire and rebuilding of the Gaza strip.! But how will the families of the civilians who were murdered what is to be of them.?? How will they live with this tragedy.?? It is not fair on the people who lost there kids especially the ones who were in UN shelters.!

12 ) GeorgyOrwell / The Former United States
06/08/2014 04:48
Israel "will allow"??? What breathtaking Chutzpah! As a Jew I am completely disgusted.

13 ) red / USA
06/08/2014 05:06
Now if only heroic Hamas will "allow" Israel's full disarmament everything should be just fine.

14 ) Hamas lost 4 years of / tunnel building
06/08/2014 07:00
in 4 weeks shot 3400 rockets that killed ONE person The Military consequences were not that brilliant But Israel cannot afford another re-armament of HAMAS so the "peace" talks will be tough..

15 ) Mark of Lewiston / USA
06/08/2014 07:16
Long term cease fire, first. Control of outbreaks of disease like Cholera and Typhus from bad water. Then Israel can think about paying for rebuilding. Foreign donors won't pay Israel to fix what Israel blew up.

16 ) Joe / Ireland
06/08/2014 09:49
Gee, thanks! However nothing short of lifting the siege is acceptable

17 ) Nad / UK
06/08/2014 11:31
Hamas the democratically elected govt. should not give in to the demands of disarmament from the zionist terrorists. They have no right to stop rebuilding of peoples after their three weeks criminal massacres.

18 ) Benji / Nigeria
06/08/2014 14:37
Palestinians have every right to defend themselves against Israeli agression. Unless both Israel & Palestinians are disarmed, no one is. The rebuilding of Gaza is no way conditional on disarming or anything else. If the factions decide at some point to morphe (with the PA forces) into a state army, good on them. Now, both sides of this conflict should commit to a long term ceasefire & work towards peace, stability, ending the blockade & two state solution. Unless they want the ICC to rule on it.

19 ) JoeFattal / USA
06/08/2014 21:41
Disarming Hamas is not a choice that Israel will go through with it. They just want see what Hamas reaction would be then they will find something else instead to delay any peace agreement. I repeat what I said earlier, Israel needs Hamas in Gaza, they need Hamas as a fighting force, as a militant group, a group that deny Israel existence and the destruction of Israel. A peacefull Hamas is more of a threat to Israel than a weaponize group. Israel will have to turn to Iran as their threat

20 ) JoeFattal / USA
06/08/2014 21:46
cont...as their threat to their survival. Militarily they will commit themselves to attack Iran something the US wont agree, but as usual Israel will do whatever it takes to justify their right to excist in the area, leaving the Palestinians aside. But Israel would still rather fighting Hamas than Iran, that why I believe any peace in the area is further away.

21 ) Jae / Norway
07/08/2014 11:56
This is so classic Israel.... First killing and destroying innocent civilians then demanding Hamas to disarm before Israel 'allows' for rebuilding of Gaza? So many things in this sentence is wrong. Allow?? Hamas disarm itself after nuking gazans? Bullocks! Israel should disarm itself, rebuild Gaza, apologize to the Palestinian people, end the apartheid, end the occupation, put a stop to zionism, give back a stolen land and trial Netanyahu for warcrimes. That will bring peace. Nothing else.

22 ) Carol Scheller / Switzerland
07/08/2014 12:19
"Israel is willing to agree" ... what utter gall ! International pressure will hopefully oblige Israel to give free access to reconstruction er, free - of course, without contributing a cent and no doubt profiting from customs costs ...

23 ) Mel / USA
07/08/2014 17:56
#16:Joe/Ireland: Bravo!
But I would add "nothing short of lifting the siege"and also ending Israel's 67yrs military occupation.bigotted/racist apartheid &holistic war crimes,too.
Let's not short-change Israel's crimes or length of brutality,time-wise. We're talking 80 yrs here,since Zionism came into Palestine with its Plan D("Final Solution")of ethnic cleansing/murder,right back to the Red Roof House &Ben Grynn.

24 ) Ugo / USA
07/08/2014 19:55
#16:Joe/Ireland: Yes, the siege is horrible. But. why would you expect Israel to lift the siege completely if Hamas continues to be committed to its destruction and will primarily use it to arm itself with bigger and stronger weaponry?

25 ) Jae / Norway
08/08/2014 14:55
To all who supports Israels tactics. Spew your nonsense elsewhere... Israel backs Hamas. It created the monster and is feeding it and using it like a dog wherever he?s needed! Read this: http://www.israeltoday.co.il/default.aspx?tabid=178&nid=16447 And of course this great article by Brandon Turbeville: http://www.activistpost.com/2014/08/why-arent-isis-and-al-qaeda-attacking.html#!bxOJgc Want peace? Stop Zionism from creating fake Islamic terror groups. End Zionism - there?s your peace!

26 ) ian / australia
09/08/2014 04:14
#2 "You Gazans...blah blah blabbity blah...except jihadists." Cripes, Brian. Wanting an end to the occupation (and blockade) of Palestine and a Palestinian state on the '67 line which includes the Aqsa mosque (which are the stated goals of Khaled Meshaal) doesn't make Hamas "jihadists". It makes it a rational, reasonable and flexible resistance movement which has endured a brutal massacre by a ruthless, sadistic attacker. So, it's actually the reverse, isn't it, Brian? Hamas are not "jihadists"

27 ) ian / australia
09/08/2014 04:14
(contd.) but YOU are the "occupier", the lawless, vicious trespasser, the bad guy. Why is that so hard for you (you and your far-gone little friend #3) in your zio-denio-bubble, to admit?
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