“I have no intention of removing a single community; I have no intention of uprooting a single Israeli,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asserted at a press conference this past weekend in Davos, Switzerland, at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum.
A source in the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem repeated Netanyahu’s vow not to remove a single community. The source told journalists on Sunday that according to the Israeli leader, Israelis in Judea and Samaria should be permitted to remain in their homes even if it means living in a Palestinian state, Israel National News (INN) reports.
The Israeli leader believes there would be no reason for a Palestinian state to be “mono-ethnic,” or for Jews to be evacuated from their homes, the source said.
Minister of Trade Naftali Bennett, chairman of the Jewish Home party, reacted immediately, posting on his Facebook page:
“The idea of Jewish settlements under Palestinian sovereignty, as was suggested by someone in the Prime Minister’s office, is very dangerous and reflects an irrationality of values. We did not return to the land of Israel after two thousand years of longing to live under the government of [Palestinian Authority President] Mahmoud Abbas.
“Whoever advocates for the idea of Jewish life in Israel under Palestinian rule is undermining our ability to sit in Tel Aviv.”
Bennett demanded that Netanyahu “immediately refute this dangerous proposal.”
Two parliamentarians from Netanyahu’s Likud party also warned against the proposal. INN reports that “Deputy Minister of Transportation Tzipi Hotovely said that ‘a diplomatic plan that relegates the Jewish settlement enterprise to Palestinian sovereignty will not receive political backing in Likud. The commitment not to uproot settlements is not enough. It is important that Israeli sovereignty be maintained.’”
Deputy Defense Minister MK Danny Danon stated: “Whoever thinks that Jews will live under Palestinian control in Judea and Samaria is invited to try and visit Gaza today and understand the meaning of ‘tolerance’ in the Middle East….
“In areas where the military will not be present and bear responsibility – no Jew will enjoy security. We will not abandon the settlers behind enemy lines,” INN reports, adding that the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel said that such an arrangement would “lead to a bloodbath.”
“One of the basic civil rights is the right to life,” stated Forum Director Nahi Eyal, according to INN. “No one has a moral and legal right to hand over responsibility for the security of Israel’s citizens to Palestinian policemen and murderers whom the government released from jail in recent months.”
NETANYAHU NOT REMOVING COMMUNITIES BUT PALESTINIAN LEADERS SAY OTHERWISE
In the past, Abbas has declared on several occasions that no Jew would be permitted to live in any future Palestinian state.
But former Palestinian Authority (PA) minister Ashraf al-Ajrami is now saying that the PA does not oppose the possibility that Jews would live in a future state of ‘Palestine’ as citizens,” according to INN.
He told IDF Radio that “Israeli settlements will not be allowed to remain inside the territory of the Palestinian state.”
“If you want to reside [there], you will have to reside [there] as a Palestinian citizen like all the others,” he said. “If there is agreement on leaving a few thousand [Jewish] citizens within the territory of the Palestinian Authority, that can be done. But Israeli settlements – that is, under some kind of Israeli control – will not exist.”
“I would not wish my worst enemy to live under Palestinian sovereignty,” Danon was quoted as saying in the Jerusalem Post. “Whoever thinks Jews can live under Palestinian control should visit the Gaza Strip.”
Netanyahu’s bureau claimed that the proposal to allow Jews to live in a Palestinian state was a ruse with the purpose of exposing the PA’s intolerance of any Jewish presence.
Daily Israel Hayom said the proposal “sparked a political firestorm…. Rightists expressed anger over the idea, leftists said it was unfeasible, and the Palestinians also dismissed it.”
“Al Ajrami may be trying to walk a fine line between wholesale rejection of any Jews in ‘Palestine’ and accepting hundreds of thousands of Jews,” INN suggests.
Author: UWI Staff
Date: Jan. 27, 2014