Ben Gvir warns he will not allow deal that releases thousands of terrorists

Illustrative: National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir leads a faction meeting of his far-right Otzma Yehudit party at the Knesset in Jerusalem, on January 22, 2024. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Illustrative: National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir leads a faction meeting of his far-right Otzma Yehudit party at the Knesset in Jerusalem, on January 22, 2024. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

At the Knesset, National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir warns he will not agree to a hostage release deal with Hamas that includes far-reaching concessions to the terror group, after reports on the latest proposal claimed it includes the release of thousands of jailed terrorists, including senior ones.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has denied the reports and vowed not to release “thousands of terrorists.”

Unconvinced, Ben Gvir, using a common Hebrew expression for something highly objectionable inserted into a proposal to make the rest seem more palatable, says the reported numbers “appear to be a ‘goat’ clause, intended to lay the groundwork for a less dire deal, but one that is still reckless on every level.

“I would like to say clearly: Mister prime minister, hundreds of fallen soldiers are not goats, the residents of the south are not goats, Israeli citizens are not goats and I am not a goat,” he says.

“We will not allow a deal that will mean victory for Hamas and a perpetuation of terror. More than 500 soldiers did not fall in vain. We will not allow the release of thousands of murderers from prison.”

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