Israel's cabinet on Wednesday approved a five-year, 19-billion-shekel ($5 billion) plan to rebuild and strengthen communities near the Gaza border after the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas militants, the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel would invest the funds in housing, infrastructure, education, employment, health and other areas.

"Hamas terrorists wanted to uproot us - but we will uproot them and deepen our roots," he said in a statement. "We will build the Land of Israel and protect our country."

His office said local communities would work with government ministries, and along with the business sector and philanthropy, to bring the region to be a "vital, flourishing and attractive area".

($1 = 3.7703 shekels)

(Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Angus MacSwan)