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Merkel: 'Germany is making efforts to advance Israel-Gaza deal'

Oct. 4, 2018 5:17 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 7, 2018 9:38 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Thursday that Germany is "making efforts to advance an Israel-Gaza deal," however, she would not elaborate on what those efforts entail.

Merkel, who arrived to Israel for a short visit, made her way to the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum in Jerusalem on Thursday.

While visiting the museum, Merkel said "Almost 80 years ago, in the night of the pogroms of November 9th, the Jewish people in Germany were faced by hatred and violence of an unexpected scale."

She added "But what followed then were the unprecedented crimes of the Shoah, a breach of civilization. This is why it is Germany's everlasting responsibility to commemorate this crime and to oppose anti-Semitism, hatred and violence."

Merkel also received an honorary doctorate from the University of Haifa at a special ceremony at the Israel Museum, which students attended to meet with the German Chancellor.

During the ceremony, a student asked Merkel if Germany would support a settlement between Israel and Hamas which would include the Israelis held in Gaza, to which she responded "Now we are making efforts but I would rather not elaborate."

Merkel clearly denied reports that her visit to Israel was not to address the demolition of Khan al-Ahmar, "That's entirely not true. Again and again it was claimed set it as a condition for our visit. We never discussed it in the government."

"You can disagree with the settlements policy and I definitely have some criticism on that, since I believe in the two-state solution. But we are two democracies and we can exchange opposing view, even here with the prime minister (Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu)."

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