The reconstruction of Gaza “is one of our interests as much as it is [an interest] of all the free world,” Israeli President Reuven Rivlin told Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Brende during a meeting in Jerusalem on Sunday. Norway and Egypt are gathering funds to rebuild Gaza following this summer’s conflict.
Reconstruction efforts, however, “should go along with the demilitarization of Gaza because otherwise we can see the next round [of violence] in no time,” said Rivlin. Without demilitarization, Hamas will put the international funds it receives for building “into military aims and the ability to attack Israel once again,” he said.
Brende said, “I know that this has been a very difficult summer for Israel. I was here in July and I saw this. It has been tough on Israel and tough on the Palestinian people.”