Gantz: Hamas is no longer in control in large parts of the Gaza Strip

Minister Benny Gantz speaks during a press conference on December 16, 2023. (YouTube screenshot; used in accordance with clause 27a of the Copyright Law)
Minister Benny Gantz speaks during a press conference on December 16, 2023. (YouTube screenshot; used in accordance with clause 27a of the Copyright Law)

War cabinet member Minister Benny Gantz says that Hamas has already been knocked out of control from large parts of Gaza, and that bringing home the hostages is a priority over any other military goal.

“The achievements of the IDF continue to grow,” Gantz says at a press conference in Tel Aviv. “In large parts of the Strip, Hamas is effectively no longer in control.”

Gantz says that “we need to continue; if we stop now, Hamas will resume its control.” He adds that “we are deep in the middle of dismantling the terror infrastructure.”

“We have determination and patience. Our enemies need to know that our determination is endless,” he says.

Gantz says that “the most important thing is returning the hostages; it is prioritized over all elements of fighting.”

“To the hostages, if you can hear me, I want you to know that we’re doing everything we can to bring you back to your loved ones,” he says.

Asked about an impending Qatari-Egyptian deal Gantz says, “I’ve heard all sorts of rumors about deals, but there is always movement and activity, and as soon as there is something ready we will update you.”

He also says that his party has yet to decide how it will vote on the upcoming budget amendment vote, and says the government must minimize its spending on coalition funds — the monies handed out in political promises.

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