Israeli official: Israel increases restrictions on Gaza to push its residents to emigrate

Aug 20,2019

Gaza Strip has been under strict Israeli siege since mid-2007 and has been under four Israeli massive offensives that rendered it almost unliveable.

Senior Israeli official revealed on Monday that Israel is increasing restrictions on Gaza to push its residents to emigrate, stating that Israeli authorities ready to arrange their flights.

The senior official revealed this during the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s diplomatic visit to Ukraine.

Speaking to reporters, the officials said that Israel had asked a number of European and Middle Eastern countries to absorb Gaza emigrants.

“Israel is even willing to arrange transportation for them, at least to one of the airports in the Negev and arrange for them to travel out of the country,” the Israeli officials said.

Israel’s National Security Council has been spearheading the initiative, with Netanyahu’s blessing, for about a year, the Times of Israel reported, citing the official.

The Israeli daily added that the programme has also been discussed several times in Israel’s security cabinet.

He also claimed that thousands of Gazans are leaving of their own volition, pointing to 35,000 Palestinians who left the Strip in 2018.

“That’s a pretty high number,” the official stated, even claiming that those who remain “are being held hostage in Gaza.”

The official, however, failed to mention Israel’s now 12-year-old siege of the Strip – which has devastated its infrastructure, economy, health sector and Palestinians’ livelihoods – or its three assaults on Gaza in the past decade.

The UN has predicted that the Strip will be “unliveable” by 2020 due to the Israeli restrictions, calling the fate of Gaza’s some 2 million Palestinians into question.