Official says Israel should buy Greek island as a 'safe haven for Jewish people': report

Official says Israel should buy Greek island as a 'safe haven for Jewish people': report
2 min read
16 March, 2022
Avri Steiner, a representative of the Kahol Lavan party, suggested that money from the Jewish National Fund be used to buy a Greek island which could serve as a refuge for Jewish people.
An Israeli official suggested purchasing a Greek island as a safe haven for the Jewish people [Getty]

An official from a party in Israel's ruling coalition has proposed the purchase of a Greek island to serve as a "haven" for Jewish people during times of war, according to reports.

Avri Steiner, a representative of Israeli Defence Minister Danny Gantz's Kahol Lavan (Blue and White) Party, said the island would act as a "haven for the Jewish people in case of emergency, as a place for Jewish refugees in times of war",  Haaretz reported.

He also suggested that money from the Jewish National Fund (JNF) could be used to buy the Greek island at a board meeting of the JNF-owned Himnuta company last Thursday.

His proposal was reportedly met with widespread opposition. The only member who did not oppose the initiative, Nachi Eyal, has ties to Israel's nationalist Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.

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Steiner raised the proposal after having spoken unofficially with other board members, some of whom believed he was purchasing the islands "as part of a doomsday scenario".

Steiner did not say whether he had found an appropriate Greek island to purchase or he was raising a general idea.

The Jewish National Fund is a controversial Israeli organisation that funds land purchase initiatives aimed at strengthening the state of Israel, often at the expense of Palestinians.

Israeli forces have displaced thousands of Palestinian families from their homes since the country's creation in 1948 and continue to occupy the West Bank and besiege the Gaza Strip.