Sun 25 Feb 2024 5:15 pm - Jerusalem Time

Netanyahu: A prisoner exchange deal will delay the invasion of Rafah

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the American CBS network today, Sunday, that in reaching a prisoner exchange deal with Hamas, Israel will delay the invasion of Rafah, and he claimed that he wants to reach a prisoner exchange deal.

According to Netanyahu, “If we complete the kidnapping deal, the military operation in Rafah will be delayed a little, but if there is no deal, we will launch the military operation in Rafah.”

He continued, "After we begin the military operation in Rafah, the military operation (war) in Gaza will end within several weeks. But Hamas's last stronghold cannot be left without dealing with it."

Netanyahu said, "We are working on a deal for kidnapped people. I want the deal so that we can free the kidnapped people, and I appreciate the efforts of the United States."

He added, "I do not know if we will reach a deal, but if Hamas backs down from its obsessive demands and comes to the ground, then there will be a deal. Hamas started with crazy demands. It is too early to say if they abandon their demands. If they bring logical demands, it is possible to achieve an agreement." .

He continued, "The Chief of the General Staff will present to me today the plan for the military operation in Rafah and the plan to evacuate the population. There is no disagreement between me and the American administration about the necessity of evacuating the population. We will move them to an area north of Rafah."

According to Netanyahu, "The Egyptians know that we have no goal of pushing Palestinians into Egypt. We talk and coordinate with them all the time. There is no danger to the peace agreement with Egypt."

In turn, member of the war cabinet, Benny Gantz, touched on the exchange of prisoners: “We are making an effort these days to come up with a plan to return our abductees and we are continuing to fight. The road is still long. The war will not stop until we return the residents to their homes safely and remove the Hamas threat.” On the citizens of Israel.


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Netanyahu: A prisoner exchange deal will delay the invasion of Rafah