Tue 25 Jun 2024 11:08 am - Jerusalem Time

Washington and Berlin demand a major role for the Palestinian Authority in governing Gaza after the war

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock and the US Ambassador to Israel, Jacob Lew, yesterday (Monday) during a conference in the Israeli city of Herzliya, demanded that the reformed Palestinian Authority have a major role in governing Gaza, after the end of the war in the Strip.

The American ambassador said: “The Palestinian Authority must be part” of “the day after” the end of the war in the Gaza Strip, stressing the need for “civil administration” of the Strip, which was destroyed by 8 and a half months of war.

The Palestinian Authority, headed by Mahmoud Abbas, has only ruled the occupied West Bank since Hamas expelled it from the Gaza Strip in 2007. Washington is demanding reform of the Authority so that it can play a major role in the future political structure of the Strip, according to what was reported by Agence France-Presse.

“We have to find a way to get these people to work together in a way that suits everyone’s needs,” Liu added. “I think this is possible.” Pointing out that the presence of a Palestinian authority in Gaza could also be beneficial to Israel, which seeks to eliminate Hamas.

The American ambassador reiterated that the United States supports the “two-state solution,” that is, the establishment of a viable Palestinian state that lives side by side with Israel and guarantees the “security and dignity” of the Palestinians in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Liu warned that “describing this as a victory for (Hamas) would be tantamount to taking things in the opposite direction,” referring to the position of the Israeli government, which believes that the establishment of a Palestinian state would be a “reward” for Hamas for the unprecedented attack it launched. On the south of the Hebrew state on October 7th.

The Hamas attack on southern Israel resulted in the deaths of 1,195 people, most of them civilians, according to an Agence France-Presse tally based on official Israeli figures.

The attackers took 251 hostages, 116 of whom are still in Gaza, including 42 who the army says were killed.

Israel responded with a violent campaign of bombing, raids and ground attacks, which led to the killing of at least 37,626 people, most of them civilians in the Gaza Strip, according to the Hamas Ministry of Health.

In turn, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock called for a “two-state solution” as “the best path to lasting peace” and “reform” without “destroying” the Palestinian Authority.

During the conference, which was also attended by many senior officers in the Israeli army, Birbock warned that “destroying and destabilizing the existing structures of the Palestinian Authority is dangerous and counterproductive.”

These statements came the day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced, on Sunday, that the phase of “violent” battles against Hamas fighters, especially in the city of Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip: “is about to end.” But the war continues.

When asked about post-war scenarios, Netanyahu announced that Israel would have a role to play in the “short term” through “military control.”

Netanyahu added: “We also want to establish a civil administration, in cooperation with local Palestinians if possible, and perhaps with external support from countries in the region, in order to manage humanitarian supplies and, later, civil affairs in the Gaza Strip.”


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Washington and Berlin demand a major role for the Palestinian Authority in governing Gaza after the war