Day 239 | Ben-Gvir, Smotrich Reject U.S. Hostage Proposal, Threaten to Quit Netanyahu Coalition

12:00 Jun 1 2024 Tel Aviv (תֵּל אָבִיב-יָפוֹ)

Photos: Published by Haaretz
People attend a demonstration against Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. Credit: Marko Djurica/REUTERS.

Palestinians carrying some salvaged belongings as they leave Jabalya Camp. Credit: AFP

Relatives and supporters of Israelis held hostage call for their release in Tel Aviv on Saturday. Credit: Ahmad Gharabli/AFP

Noa Shpigel for Haaretz

2 hours ago
'Biden offer is absolute defeat': Ben-Gvir, Smotrich reject U.S. hostage deal, threaten to quit Netanyahu coalition

Israel's far-right finance minister, Bezalel Smotrich, and national security minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir, announced they will resign from the government if the proposal for ending the war and releasing the hostages presented on Friday by U.S. President Joe Biden is accepted.

"We will not agree to a ceasefire before the destruction of Hamas, not to a significant setback to the achievements of the war so far through the withdrawal of the IDF and the return of Gazans to the north of the Strip, and not to the wholesale release of terrorists who will, God forbid, return to murder Jews," Smotrich said.

Ben-Gvir called it "a flawed deal, which is a victory for terror and a security threat to the State of Israel. Agreement to such a deal is not the absolute victory – but the absolute defeat."

Noa Shpigel
2 hours ago

Lapid: Ben-Gvir and Smotrich's threats are the abandonment of hostages; this is worst gov't in Israel's history

Israel's opposition leader Yair Lapid reacted to Finance Minster Bezalel SMotrich and National Security Minster Itamar Ben-Gvir's rejection of the U.S. hostage deal proposal in post on X: "The threats of Ben-Gvir and Smotrich are the abandonment of national security, of the hostages and of the residents of the north and the south. This is the worst and most reckless government in the country's history. For them, there will be a war here forever, zero responsibility, zero management, a complete failure."

Bar Peleg for Haaretz
57 minutes ago

Police clash with anti-gov't protesters in Tel Aviv, arrest demonstrators
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