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July 11, 2021 11:44 am

Israel: Cabinet Mulls New Outline for Qatari Cash Transfer to Gaza Strip

avatar by i24 News

A Palestinian Hamas-hired civil servant displays US dollar banknotes after receiving her salary paid by Qatar, in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, Dec. 7, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Ibraheem Abu Mustafa.

i24 News – Israel’s security cabinet was set to meet Sunday to discuss the outstanding — and thorny — issue of Qatari-pledged financial aid to rebuild the Gaza Strip.

One proposal on the table — and seemingly the most likely — is the use of a third party, probably initially the United Nations, which would see $30 million of Qatari aid infused into the Hamas-run coastal enclave. There are rumors that Hamas’ rival, the Palestinian Authority, could take over the disbursement further down the line.

Another option being considered is the transfer of funds to families in need via Gaza’s postal banks, according to Israeli outlet Ynet. These monies would only be released once the Shin Bet had ensured the funds did not fall into Hamas’ hands

Jerusalem has held several talks recently with the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland, who visited Doha last week in hopes Qatar and Hamas would accept the plan, reported Ynet.

Hamas’ leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar threatened last month that if Qatari aid was not allowed into the Strip, then his group and other Islamists would restart the firing of rockets into Israeli territory. At one point, he also said that Hamas was flush enough with funds to not need any of the Qatari aid money.

Israel’s security cabinet is also set to discuss a range of issues regarding Hamas and the Gaza Strip, including the appropriate response to acts of aggression against Israel, such as the launching of incendiary balloons, which have scorched acres of arable land.

They will also review contingencies for another round of fighting — which would be Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s first conflict as premier, assuming it breaks out in the near future. There will also be a discussion about how far apart Israel and Hamas are — which has been termed an “unbridgeable gap” — on prisoner exchanges.

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