Mohammed Dahlan, a Palestinian Exile, on an Arab Vision for Gaza

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As the Gaza war rages, with civilian deaths soaring, few Arab leaders have publicly voiced their visions for the future of the battered enclave, fearing they will be accused of endorsing Israel’s actions.

But one influential Palestinian exile, in an interview with The New York Times, has provided public insight into the types of postwar plans that Arab leaders are privately discussing.

Mohammed Dahlan, an adviser to the president of the United Arab Emirates, outlined one under which Israel and Hamas would hand power to a new and independent Palestinian leader who could rebuild Gaza under the protection of an Arab peacekeeping force.

While such plans face steep challenges, the leaders of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Emirates are open to supporting processes that are part of efforts leading to a Palestinian state, said Mr. Dahlan, who also has close ties to Egypt’s president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

Officials from six Arab governments gathered in Saudi Arabia last week to discuss the future of Gaza and the need for a cease-fire, according to two Palestinian officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Under the plan outlined by Mr. Dahlan and echoed privately by Arab nations, a new Palestinian leader would assume responsibility for Gaza and the parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank currently administered by the Palestinian Authority. That leader would replace Mahmoud Abbas, the authority’s 88-year-old president, who would retain a ceremonial role, Mr. Dahlan said.


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