Netanyahu seeks open-ended control over security and civilian affairs in Gaza in new postwar plan

Palestinians wounded in the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip are brought to Al Aqsa hospital in Deir al Balah, Gaza Strip, Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip (AP) — A long-awaited postwar plan by Israel’s prime minister shows that his government seeks open-ended control over security and civilian affairs in the Gaza Strip. That was swiftly rejected Friday by Palestinian leaders and runs counter to Washington’s vision for the war-ravaged enclave.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presented the two-page document to his security Cabinet late Thursday for approval.


Deep disagreements over Gaza’s future have led to increasingly public friction between Israel and the United States, its closest ally. The Biden administration seeks eventual Palestinian governance in Gaza and the Israeli-occupied West Bank as a precursor to Palestinian statehood, an outcome vehemently opposed by Netanyahu and his right-wing government. Netanyahu’s plan envisions hand-picked Palestinians administering Gaza.

Separately, cease-fire efforts appeared to gain traction, with mediators to present a new proposal at an expected high-level meeting this weekend in Paris. The U.S., Egypt and Qatar have been struggling for weeks to find a formula that could halt Israel’s devastating offensive in Gaza, but now face an unofficial deadline as the Muslim holy month of Ramadan approaches.

In Gaza, Israeli airstrikes in the center and south of the territory killed at least 92 Palestinians, including children and women, overnight and into Friday, health officials and an Associated Press journalist said. Another 24 bodies remained trapped under the rubble.

After a strike levelled his apartment building in the central town of Deir al-Balah, online video showed Mahmoud Zueitar — a comedian well known in Gaza for his appearances in TV commercials — rushing into the hospital holding his young sister, who was screaming and covered in blood. At least 25 people were killed in the strike, 16 of them women and children.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Star-Advertiser's TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email