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Netanyahu publishes details of his plan for postwar Gaza

Netanyahu publishes details of his plan for postwar Gaza

Israel will control security in a demilitarised Gaza Strip and play a role in civilian affairs after its war on Hamas ends, according to a plan Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu submitted to his Cabinet for approval.

While lacking specifics, the plan marks the first time he has presented a formal postwar vision. Netanyahu's insistence on an open-ended Israeli role in running Gaza runs counter to key US proposals for a revitalised Palestinian autonomous government eventually governing both Gaza and the Israeli-occupied West Bank as a precursor to statehood.

The plan, published by the prime minister's office, was presented to Cabinet ministers late on Thursday. It reiterates that Israel is determined to crush Hamas, the militant group that overran the Gaza Strip in 2007.

Polls have indicated that a majority of Palestinians don't support Hamas, but that the group has deep roots in Palestinian society. Critics say Israel's goal of eliminating Hamas is unattainable.

It calls for freedom of action for Israel's military across Gaza after the war to thwart any security threat and says Israel would establish a buffer zone inside Gaza likely to provoke US objections.

The plan also envisions Gaza being governed by local officials who it says would "not be identified with countries or entities that support terrorism and will not receive payment from them."

It's not clear if any Palestinians would agree to fill such sub-contractor roles. Over the past decades, Israel has repeatedly tried and failed to set up hand-picked local Palestinian governing bodies.

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