בנימין נתניהו הר חומה 20 בפברואר סיפוח החלת ריבונות
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promotes West Bank annexation in February
Photo: Reuters
Yamina leader Ayelet Shaked condemns Netanyahu for stalled annexation

Shaked: Netanyahu kowtowing to Gantz and Arab MKs on annexation

Right-wing former minister says she is hopeful PM will use months ahead to advance his promised plan for West Bank sovereignty, while Liberman mocks prime minister, accusing him of stealing votes with empty promises

Ynet |
Published: 07.01.20 , 17:15
Former justice minister and leader of the far-right Yamina faction on Wednesday accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of succumbing to pressure from his Blue & White coalition partners and the Arab members of the Knesset when his much-touted plan to annex parts of the West Bank was postponed.
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  • Netanyahu had cited July 1 as the day Israel would extend its sovereignty over parts of the West Bank, but instead found himself coming under fire from the right for failing to carry out a central election promise.
    איילת שקדאיילת שקד
    Yamina leader Ayelet Shaked condemns Netanyahu for stalled annexation
    (Photo: Yariv Katz)
    "July 1 will be remembered as the day no historic move was made," Shaked said.
    "Netanyahu spread fear throughout his election campaign that if he lost to Defense Minister Benny Gantz, the latter would join forces with the Arab MK's to the detriment of the country. But now we see he was himself crushed by them and his promised annexation did not take place."
    Shaked said she hoped Netanyahu would still use the next few months to convince a friendly American administration to support his plan to extend Israeli sovereignty over parts of the West Bank, though she said she understood that such a move would not include the Jordan Valley as originally promised.
    "We still have a couple of months in which we can choose to act, if the prime minister takes advantage of the time to advance more than a declarative move," Shaked said.
    "I hope he can stand firm in the face of Gantz and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi as well as the White House to see annexation through," she said.
    בנימין נתניהו הר חומה 20 בפברואר סיפוח החלת ריבונותבנימין נתניהו הר חומה 20 בפברואר סיפוח החלת ריבונות
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promotes West Bank annexation in February
    (Photo: Reuters)
    The former minister expressed concern over reports that the government was considering handing over some West Bank land to the Palestinian Authority in exchange for areas annexed by Israel.
    "This would be a red line we would not allow be to crossed," Shaked said. "If necessary, we will enlist opposition from within Netanyahu's Likud party. We have sway over certain members of the party and expect they too will reject any such proposal."
    Meanwhile another former Netanyahu ally, Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman, on Wednesday mocked the prime minister for failing to carry out the annexation as he had promised, calling the Likud leader's campaign promise a public relations stunt and a theft of right-wing votes.
    אביגדור ליברמןאביגדור ליברמן
    Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman
    (Photo: Amit Shabi)
    "Netanyahu had no intention of carrying out any annexation," Liberman said during a visit to Khan al-Ahmar, an illegally built Palestinian village near the settlement of Maale Adumin that Netanyahu had vowed to demolish but has refrained from doing so citing sanctions from the International Criminal Court.
    "I propose taking action," Liberman said, rejecting concerns over international reaction to a one-sided move.
    "Begin annexed the Golan Heights and the international screaming and shouting eventually died down and was forgotten," he said.
    "It is worth paying a price for action but not for empty talk," he said adding that that would just be silly.

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