A far-right Israeli minister has threatened to “re-occupy” the besieged Gaza Strip and “re-colonize” the settlements that were evacuated in the area before 2005, in another sign of emerging Israeli radical right.
The Israeli minister of national missions Orit Strook told Israeli Channel 7 that Israel has to return its settlements once again.
“I believe that we have provided many sacrifices to restore Gaza,” Strook said, adding “Unfortunately, we cannot return to Gaza without involving many casualties, as well as the departure from it came with many casualties.”
However, the response of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip to such claims was that "Israel is too weak to occupy the area once again."
The new Israeli far-right regime led by prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has already begun working on pushing through its far-right policies especially in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, after coming into office on December 29.
In one of the many agreements signed before the regime took office, Netanyahu promised the Religious Zionism party, one of his main coalition partners, to annex the occupied West Bank.
The agreement said the Jewish people “have a natural right over the Land of Israel”.
On December 28, the then-incoming Israeli regime announced that its top priority was to “advance and develop settlement in all parts of the land of Israel” including the Galilee, the Naqab Desert (Negev), the occupied Syrian Golan Heights and the occupied West Bank, which reveals that the Israeli regime has no intention of allowing the creation of a Palestinian state.
Israeli authorities have already begun imposing stricter restrictions on Palestinian construction and have pushed ahead with home demolitions in Area C, the 60 percent of the occupied West Bank under full Israeli military and civil control.
This far-right extremism was also seen in the attitude and words of Israeli minister Itmar Ben Gvir, also head of the Jewish Power Party, who has called for the expulsion of “disloyal” Palestinians, the annexation of the West Bank, and taking revenge against anyone who stands in the face of the Israeli regime.
Also, Ben Gvir has been pushing to escalate Palestinian home demolitions in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and has been imposing harsh measures on Palestinian detainees already suffering dire conditions in Israeli prisons.
According to media reports, the Israeli Knesset on Tuesday passed a bill to allow Israeli settlers to return to four evacuated settlements in the northern occupied West Bank.
In 2005, former prime minister Ariel Sharon evacuated several Israeli settlements in Gaza along with four settlements in the northern occupied West Bank as part of his "unilateral" plan for disengagement from the territory.
On May 15, 1948, Israel was established at the expense of the forced expulsion of nearly 800,000 Palestinians. Israel occupied the Gaza Strip, the West Bank and East al-Quds during the Six-Day War in 1967. Since then, more than 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements.