The “voluntary” resettlement of Palestinians from Gaza is slowly becoming a key official policy of the government, with a senior official saying that Israel has held talks with several countries for their potential absorption.
Zman Israel, The Times of Israel’s Hebrew sister site, has learned that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition is conducting secret contacts for accepting thousands of immigrants from Gaza with Congo, in addition to other nations.
“Congo will be willing to take in migrants, and we’re in talks with others,” a senior source in the security cabinet said. [Continue reading…]
Rights advocates in the United States are urging President Joe Biden to end his administration’s “complicity” in Israeli rights abuses after key members of Israel’s government backed the idea of pushing Palestinians out of Gaza.
Far-right Israeli ministers Itamar Ben-Gvir and Bezalel Smotrich said this week that Israel should “encourage emigration” from the coastal enclave, home to an estimated 2.3 million Palestinians.
Israel has been carrying out a military offensive in Gaza since October 7, resulting in an estimated 1.9 million Palestinians being internally displaced, according to the United Nations.
“If there are 100,000 or 200,000 Arabs in Gaza and not two million Arabs, the entire discussion on the day after [the war ends] will be totally different,” Smotrich said on Sunday, calling for the “voluntary migration” of Palestinians.
A day later, Ben-Gvir, who oversees national security, made a similar appeal, saying it was “a correct, just, moral and humane solution”, Israeli media outlets reported.
Their remarks are the latest by Israeli officials alluding to the prospect of resettling Palestinians outside of Gaza. Human rights and legal experts have warned that forced displacement constitutes a war crime under international law and could lead to ethnic cleansing.
“It’s not really ‘voluntary’ when you’re bombing homes and starving the entire population,” said Rasha Mubarak, a Palestinian American organiser. [Continue reading…]