Photo: Noam Moscowitz
Rivlin. Concerned about provocations
Photo: Noam Moscowitz
Netanyahu. Absent from vote
Photo: Gil Yohanan

Likud approves resumption of construction upon freeze's end

Likud Central Committee votes in favor of resumption of construction in settlements in September; prime minister conspicuously missing from vote

The Likud Central Committee approved Thursday a proposal put forward by Knesset Member Danny Danon calling for the resumption of construction in the settlements in September upon the end of the temporary freeze period announced by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The prime minister did not attend the vote, as an act of protest.


Indeed, few Likud ministers and MKs attended the meeting.


The decision should be binding as part of Likud policy towards settlement construction, but in effect will not have significance since the Central Committee has been stripped of real power following Netanyahu's decision to deny it of the authority to elect the party's MKs.


Nevertheless, ministers Benny Begin, Yuli Edelstein, Moshe Kahlon and Michael Eitan and Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin did show up for the vote.


Rivlin said that he hoped "the vote won't be turned into another provocation, as if the Likud is provoking the entire world." He confirmed that the Likud's stance is that Jews can settle in all parts of the Land of Israel. "Regardless of the Committee's decision today, we promised that we shall resume building at the end of the freeze."


Despite his absence, Netanyahu has repeatedly stressed during the last few months that the freeze is temporary and that construction will be resumed at the end of the period. The settlers' fierce opposition to the move led to a series of clashes, some violent, opposite Civil Administration inspectors who enforced the freeze orders.


US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stressed that the freeze was not a precondition for the peace process.


פרסום ראשון: 06.24.10, 20:17
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