National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir expresses support for resettling Palestinians from the Gaza Strip abroad, declaring that the war presents an “opportunity to concentrate on encouraging the migration of the residents of Gaza,” during his Otzma Yehudit party’s weekly faction meeting.
He says such a policy would facilitate the return of residents of Israel’s Gaza-border communities as well as Israeli settlements in Gaza, evacuated in 2005, and is “a correct, just, moral and humane solution.
“We cannot withdraw from any territory we are in in the Gaza Strip. Not only do I not rule out Jewish settlement there, I believe it is also an important thing,” he adds.
A number of lawmakers, including members of the cabinet, have pushed for what they call the “voluntary resettlement” of Palestinians from Gaza, a policy that has been roundly rejected by Prime Minister Netanyahu and the international community.
The idea of population transfer, once considered a fringe view held by members of the ultranationalist Kahane movement, was given renewed prominence in Israeli political discourse this November when MKs Danny Danon (Likud) and Ram Ben-Barak (Yesh Atid) published an op-ed piece for the Wall Street Journal, calling for “countries around the world to accept limited numbers of Gazan families who have expressed a desire to relocate.”
Their proposal was welcomed by Ben Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, who called their initiative “the right humanitarian solution for the residents of Gaza.”
Writing in The Jerusalem Post several days later, Likud Intelligence Minister Gila Gamliel mulled the possibility of promoting “the voluntary resettlement of Palestinians in Gaza, for humanitarian reasons, outside of the Strip.”