In an interview with the Palestinian newspaper al-Quds, the Israeli Defense Minister said that if Hamas stops attacking Israel with rockets and building terror tunnels, Israel will help restore the Gaza Strip. However, he stressed that if the Hamas leaders impose a war on Israel, it will be their last.

Avigdor Lieberman

Avigdor Lieberman Photo Credit: Channel 2 News

The Palestinian newspaper al-Quds, which is published in East Jerusalem, interviewed Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman. The special interview was published in today’s (Monday) edition. During the interview, Lieberman commented on the tensions in the Gaza Strip and stressed that Israel is ready to lift the blockade in exchange for the end of the violence.

“If Hamas stops digging tunnels and launching rockets, we would be the first to invest in a harbor, airport and industrial zone in the Gaza Strip,” said Lieberman during the interview. Lieberman added that even the slightest change in this direction would prompt Israel to help restore Gaza.

Photo Credit: Screenshot of the al-Quds newspsper/Channel 2 News

Lieberman also stressed that if another war is started, Israel’s goal will be to completely eliminate Hamas in Gaza. “Israel has no intention of reconquering the Gaza Strip,” said Lieberman. “But if the Hamas leaders impose a war, this will be their last war. Israel will completely eliminate their rule.”

Lieberman’s interview was published shortly after the Israeli Air Force responded to a red alert rocket siren that was sounded in Southern Israel by attacking Hamas terror infrastructure in Gaza.

When addressing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Lieberman said that he supports a two-state solution but that he does not believe that the way to achieve this is through a “land in exchange for peace” strategy. Lieberman reiterated his stance that the sides can achieve a two-state solution through population and land swaps.

“Israel does not need Umm al-Fahm,” said Lieberman. “If they see themselves as Palestinians, they should be part of a Palestinian state.”