Middle East Monitor / February 20, 2020
Israeli Defence Minister Naftali Bennett has said that he is using new tactics to release Israeli soldiers held in the Gaza Strip, Safa news agency reported on Wednesday.
They are said to be very different to those used by his predecessors.
“We are holding the bodies of terrorists and we capture Hamas members who cross the border, in order to increase the pain of the other side,” the minister explained. “That’s part of the change that I started.”
He added that he uses a carrot and stick policy with Gaza. “We use a tactic of reward and punishment. If it is quiet it will be good for them, if it is not quiet, it will be bad for them.”
Explaining this further, he pointed out, “When there is quiet there are merchants, imports and exports, a fishing zone, and we do not attack them. When there are balloons, we close it all and bomb their bases and rocket factories.”
Bennett said that he “personally approves every target” and promised to make no room for “discussions”.
Observers noted that the right-wing minister didn’t put any of his policy into the context of the ongoing military occupation and blockade, against which the people of Palestine have a legitimate right to resist.