Qatari envoy says Israel rejected air link with Gaza

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — A Qatari envoy is being quoted as saying that Israel has rejected a proposal to open an air link between the blockaded Gaza Strip and Doha.

Mohammed al-Emadi, who coordinates Qatari humanitarian projects in the Hamas-controlled territory, told the Palestinian news agency SAWA that Qatar offered to handle security over the airway to address Israeli concerns.

Instead, he says Israel offered an airport in areas under its control, and that his country will review the proposal. The interview was published Monday.

Israel and Egypt imposed an air, land and sea blockade of Gaza after the Islamic militant group Hamas seized power.

Qatar often serves as a mediator between the enemies. The energy-rich Gulf state also has overseen large reconstruction projects in the war-battered territory.

COGAT, the Israeli defense body responsible for Palestinian civilian affairs, declined comment.