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Lapid unveils Israeli economic plan for Gaza

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid presented an outline for improving the lives of Gazans, offering them economic rehabilitation steps in exchange for Hamas halting its military build-up.
Israeli Finance Minister Yair Lapid (L) inspects the damage inside a house following a rocket attack by militants from the Gaza Strip on the southern town of Sderot, Israel, July 21, 2014.

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid presented Sept. 12 his vision for a long-term settlement between Israel and the Gaza Strip. Addressing a conference of the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism at Reichman University, Lapid proposed an outline for the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip. Lapid said that the plan — dubbed "economy for security" — presents a more realistic approach toward the reconstruction of Gaza in exchange for disarmament of Palestinian armed factions.

Lambasting the policy adopted by former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vis-a-vis Gaza, Lapid noted, "Since Israel left the Gaza Strip in 2005, we have been dragged into round after round of violence causing suffering for our people and harming our economy. The policy Israel has pursued up until now hasn't substantially changed the situation. The closures haven’t stopped the smuggling and production of weapons. Last night we once again struck Gaza after yet another rocket was fired, and residents ran to their shelters. We need to change direction. What should we do? The short answer is that we need to start a large, multi-year process of economy for security. It is the more realistic version of what in the past was called 'rehabilitation for demilitarization.'"

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