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Gantz dismisses accusations by Lapid, Ashkenazi that Gaza op was politically motivated

Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and, behind them, Shin Bet chief Nadav Argaman, at a press conference after the Gaza ceasefire, Tel Aviv, May 21, 2021. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)
Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and, behind them, Shin Bet chief Nadav Argaman, at a press conference after the Gaza ceasefire, Tel Aviv, May 21, 2021. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)

Defense Minister Benny Gantz dismisses claims by Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid and Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman that Operation Guardian of the Walls had been politically motivated by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Critics of the premier have noted that the spiraling situation within and beyond Israel proper led Yamina chairman Naftali Bennett to walk out of his talks with Lapid to form a unity government that would replace Netanyahu and instead return to negotiations with Netanyahu.

“I don’t accept this claim,” Gantz tells Channel 13. “I strongly urge everyone to be very careful about where they are infusing political matters.”

Gantz insists that Netanyahu did not act out of political motivations during the conflict. Nonetheless, the Blue and White chairman says he will not again sit in a government with the Likud leader, who he says has advanced no strategic diplomatic efforts to prevent Gaza war after Gaza war in addition to not addressing the growing needs of Israel’s Arab population, which contributed to the outbreak of the recent Arab-Jewish violence.

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