Netanyahu huddles with security cabinet, Gallant looks to rebuilding south

With his spy chief in Qatar holding high-level meetings aimed at extending a truce with the Hamas terror group beyond its Thursday morning deadline, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is huddling with his security cabinet in Tel Aviv ostensibly to discuss diplomatic efforts or a return to fighting.

The Prime Minister’s Office confirms the meeting in a terse statement.

The meeting comes shortly after Defense Minister Yoav Gallant told military brass that troops will remain in Gaza as long as needed to return security to Israeli residents of southern Israel, rolling out plans for an eventual return of communities near the Gaza border.

Gallant said at the meeting that the first communities to be rehabilitated would be those outside the northern Gaza Strip and at least 4 kilometers away.

“Once the IDF is operating in northern Gaza, it changes everything and allows this to take place,” he says, according to a readout from his office. “Soon we’ll work on other places too, change them in kind, return people to other places. All this under the total protection of the IDF and the Israeli government.”

“We are committed to staying in Gaza and carrying out all of our missions to bring these communities back; the mission is not complete until we finish off this problem called Hamas.”

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