Netanyahu: Israel has nothing against Gazans

2014-08-08 07:14
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (Lior Mizrahi, AFP)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (Lior Mizrahi, AFP)

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Washington - Israel has "nothing against the people of Gaza" and wants to help them deal with the "tyranny" of Hamas rule, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Fox News on Thursday.

"I'm not sure the battle is over," he told the cable network's Hannity programme, a month after the start of the Israel offensive that has claimed nearly 2 000 mostly Palestinian lives.

"I think we've degraded their (Hamas) capabilities significantly," he said, adding there may still remain tunnels dug by Hamas under the Gaza-Israel border that have yet to be found.

'Terror tyranny'

"It really depends on whether they want to continue this battle. I think we have to find a peaceful solution, if we can," he added.

He added: "We have nothing against the people of Gaza. In fact, we want to help the people of Gaza who are suffering under this terror tyranny."

On the high number of Palestinian civilian casualties that has provoked international condemnation, Netanyahu described such deaths as inevitable in the heat of battle.

"Those casualties are cruel, but they're unintentional," he said.

"Israel acts that way. It attacks combatants and accidentally kills non-combatants - but in the case of the terrorists, it's the exact opposite."

Terrorist danger

Netanyahu also warned Americans that "the greatest danger we face" is terrorist groups or nations, backed by Iran, equipped with nuclear-tipped rockets and missiles.

"Look at the danger we face when they have rockets and missiles," he said.

"Now, imagine what kind of danger we'd have if they could put a nuclear warhead on top of these missiles. That's the danger that is coming from Iran."

Read more on:    benjamin netanyahu  |  israel  |  palestine  |  iran  |  middle east peace  |  gaza

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