Netanyahu: Israel will take 'overall security responsibility' in Gaza after war

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel will take “overall security responsibility” in Gaza after the war between Israel and Palestinian militant group Hamas.

“I think Israel will, for an indefinite period, will have the overall security responsibility, because we’ve seen what happens when we don’t have it,” Netanyahu said in an interview with ABC News on Monday. “When we don’t have that security responsibility, what we have is the eruption of Hamas terror on a scale that we couldn’t imagine.”

The prime minister suggested he was open to allowing “little pauses” in fire for the transport of humanitarian goods and hostages to leave, but reiterated there will not be a “general” cease-fire unless hostages taken by Hamas are released.

President Biden and officials from the White House have been pushing for a “humanitarian pause” in the conflict. The pause has been described by the White House as a temporary, “localized” break in fighting to allow aid into Gaza or civilians to get out. 

Israeli forces have been closing in on Gaza City as they seeks to defeat Hamas following the group’s terror attack last month that killed more than 1,400 people in Israel. More than 10,000 people in Palestine have died amid retaliatory strikes by Israel in Gaza, according to the Gaza Health Ministry’s Monday update, with countries urging a pause to allow humanitarian aid to civilians there.

Biden and Netanyahu discussed the idea of “tactical pauses” Monday before the prime minister’s ABC interview. 

“The two leaders discussed the possibility of tactical pauses to provide civilians with opportunities to safely depart from areas of ongoing fighting, to ensure assistance is reaching civilians in need, and to enable potential hostage releases,” the White House said in a readout of the call.

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