- Associated Press - Thursday, February 16, 2017

JERUSALEM (AP) - Israel’s defense minister has offered to speak directly to Palestinians in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip, saying “Let’s talk.”

Avigdor Lieberman proposed the “direct dialogue” in a video on the new website of COGAT, the Israeli defense body that liaises with Palestinians in the blockaded territory.

He says he is ready to communicate with Palestinians via video conferencing and to answer questions submitted on the website.

Israel and Egypt have maintained a blockade on Gaza since Hamas, an Islamic militant group, seized power in 2007. Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since then.

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