Israel tried to expel 60,000 Palestinians from the Gaza Strip to Paraguay after reaching understandings with the government of the South American state in 1969, Israeli Public Broadcaster (Kan) has revealed.
According to Al-Hadath news website, Kan said that the late Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol, who served from 1963-1969, laid down the bases of this plan.
The plan was part of Israeli deliberations about how to deal with the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967 which multiplied the occupied lands by three folds.
One of the other possible plans, was setting up an agricultural Palestinian neighbourhood in Sinai, which was under Israeli occupation at the time.
Kan said the Paraguay plan was posed to the Israeli cabinet three months after Eshkol's death when Golda Meir was prime minister and General Zvi Zamir was Mossad director.
Zamir explained the details of the understandings with Paraguay which stipulated that Israel pays $350,000 in the first stage for the deportation expenses of 10,000 Palestinians. Each person deported would have been paid $100 to start their new life in Paraguay.
The cabinet approved the plan, but its application failed as only three Palestinians migrated to Paraguay; two later tried to return.
CORRECTION: This item previously stated the plan was to expel Palestinians to Uruguay. This was incorrect, it should have been Paraguay which we have now corrected.