MK Danny Danon (Likud) has begun collecting signatures from heads of the local Likud branches for a letter in which he calls on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu not to announce any territorial concessions to the Palestinian Authority in Judea and Samaria.
Danon’s initiative comes amid reports that Netanyahu is planning to make a new policy statement on PA demands.
“We all heard of the intention of the Prime Minister to deliver a speech in May in Washington in which he will declare the creation of a Palestinian state and will announce that he will give land in Judea and Samaria to the Palestinians,” Danon said on Wednesday. “This is unacceptable. This is not the Likud policy. We were not elected to implement the ideology of Ehud Barak and the Labor party. We have to be very clear and I have started, together with the heads of the Likud branches in Israel, to put pressure on the Prime Minister and to tell him that if he goes in the direction Barak is taking him, we will not be with him.”
Danon, who reported that the letter has already been signed by ten heads of Likud branches across the country, including Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Petah Tikva, called on Netanyahu to stay loyal to the Likud platform.
“If you go with Defense Minister Ehud Barak you will not get the support of the national camp that elected you as Prime Minister,” he said. “The national camp wants you to stay loyal to the platform and we will do whatever we can to ensure that.”
The letter to Netanyahu reads as follows:
To: Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu
We, the heads of the branches, activists and members of the Likud movement, turn to you in light of the ongoing construction freeze in Judea and Samaria. You recently announced a national emergency program for lowering housing prices. There is no doubt that affordable housing is a central condition for strengthening the lives of young couples and so we want to congratulate you on this step.
At the same time as you make efforts to increase construction throughout the country, unfortunately the construction freeze in Judea and Samaria continues. Beyond damaging the communities, the construction freeze severely affects young couples and families who want to make their lives in these areas. The Likud Party has raised the banner over the years, and even during the last election campaign promised that it would allow for the natural development of the Judea and Samaria communities.
In preparation for your speech, in which you will present your new policy plan, we strengthen you, hope that you will withstand international pressures, and remind you that you are obligated to those who elected you and who believe in the continued settlement in Judea and Samaria, and believe in the historic right of the Jewish people to live and build throughout the country. Following a further construction freeze, it would be difficult to restore the confidence of the Yesha voters in the Likud.
Despite government commitments to strengthen Jerusalem by providing a free academic year to IDF veterans in the capital, the coalition on Wednesday rejected a bill that seeks to include Jerusalem in areas where the free academic year will be granted.
MK Yohanan Plesner responded to the move in a video conversation with Israel National News:
“Interestingly, Netanyahu supported this kind of legislation for all IDF veterans in his election promises,” said Plesner. “It’s also included in the coalition establishment agreements. It’s also included in promises that were given in the Knesset assembly. But when it comes to the actual vote, Netanyahu and his government object and are basically objecting to Jerusalem.”
Plesner added that “the government’s objection will not only not assist Jerusalem will be detrimental to the future of Jerusalem because those incentives are provided to other parts of the country and therefore the growth engine will be lost to other parts of the country.”
He called on Netanyahu “to live up to his promises and support this legislation.”