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Former Mossad chief: Hamas will benefit from Turkey-Israel deal

July 1, 2016 at 3:08 pm

Former Mossad chief Efraim Halevy said on Thursday that Hamas will benefit greatly from a deal signed between Israel and Turkey to restore ties after six years of a rift.

“It is true that the deal has great strategic importance for Israel in the long term, and the points outlined by the prime minister are of course important and provide for commercial, informational and security exchanges,” Halevy said in an article published in Israel’s Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper.

According to Halevy, although the naval blockade of Gaza which Ankara had wanted lifted remains in force, Ankara will now be able to transfer humanitarian aid and construction material to Gaza via Israeli ports which would create an economic boom in the enclave.

“The construction materials and jobs that will be available to start rebuilding the enclave, including the construction of a power plant and hospitals, will lead to a higher standard of living in Gaza, and could possibly lead to arguing the feasibility of the naval blockade,” he said.

Halevy also believed that Hamas’ shares have risen in many countries including Turkey which hosted the movement’s Chief Khaled Meshaal in Istanbul two days before concluding the agreement, but chose to brief the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas two days after the agreement.

Halevy also feels that the Hamas and Turkey relationship has received the blessing of Israel when Ankara proposed to mediate the retrieval of the bodies of two Israeli hostages held by Hamas and the release of other Israelis who had infiltrated into the Gaza Strip.

He believes Israel would think twice before it wages another war on Gaza if it does not have the permission of Ankara and Moscow, which has a special relationship with Hamas.

However, the ex-Mossad chief warned that the agreement will leave Israel without a security policy to deal with Gaza in the future.