About 3,000 people, including Interior Minister Gideon Sa'ar and Coalition Chairman Knesset Member Yariv Levin, took part Friday morning in a protest march in the Jordan Valley.
Minister Sa'ar declared to the participants of the march: "We are here with a simple and clear message – the Jordan Valley is Israeli." The march was initiated by the chairs of the Lobby of the Eretz-Israel Front in the Knesset.
Against the backdrop of the possibility of having the entire region included in a future political agreement with the Palestinians, the senior Likud members Sa'ar and Levin sought to declare their opposition to any territorial concession in the Jordan Valley.
The interior minister added that the marchers have come to support the settlers of the Jordan Valley, who "are on a mission for the entire Israeli people."
"(Israel) needs to know that the (Jordan) Valley settlement will remain and prosper for ages," the minister stressed. "The security of Israel required a strategic depth, it is unthinkable for the border to not be in the Jordan Valley; the alternative is that the border would cross through Kfar Saba and Netanya, which is unacceptable."
The minister added that issue of security is the reason the Israeli presence in the Jordan Valley is crucial: "It's important for us to remember – there is no military presence without settlement. When there's settlement, there's IDF . When there's no settlement – there's no security and there's terror."
MK Levin also addressed the marchers and said: "It is our indisputable right to build and be built in the Jordan Valley and all across the land of Israel. We are determined and know that our truth will prevail. We are stronger than any of the attempts to uproot us from here."
Last December, the Ministerial Committee on Legislative Affairs approved the bill submitted by MK Miri Regev (Likud Beiteinu) asking to annex the Jordan Valley, thus securing that the territory would remain under full Israeli sovereignty even in the case of a land swap deal with the Palestinians. However, an appeal filed by Just Minister Tzipi Livni and Yesh Atid minister Yair Lapid and Ya'akov Peri will most probably prevent this legislative procedure.