New Right leader Ayelet Shaked (Flash90/Yonatan Sindel) Flash90/Yonatan Sindel
New Right leader Ayelet Shaked

“We cannot afford to hesitate or wait,” said New Right party leader Ayelet Shaked. “We must take advantage of this window of opportunity immediately.”

By United With Israel Staff 

Following Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s pledge before both the April 9 and September 17 Knesset elections to extend Israeli sovereignty over portions of Judea and Samaria, leader of the New Right party and former justice minister Ayelet Shaked says that now is the time.

MK Shaked introduced a bill in parliament on Sunday, stating that “there is a diplomatic window of opportunity and willingness on the part of the U.S. for this kind of annexation that will not return.”

The territories listed in Shaked’s legislation are the Jordan Valley, the city of Ma’aleh Adumim, and the Gush Etzion region.

Like Netanyahu, Shaked stressed that Israeli sovereignty would be imposed only over areas where Jews live.

In addition to the political instability in Israel, various right-wing parliamentarians have expressed concern over the future of the sympathetic ear which Israel has enjoyed during the U.S. Trump administration.

“Under certain circumstances, I think Israel has the right to retain some, but unlikely all, of the West Bank [Judea and Samaria],” said U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman in a June interview with The New York Times.

“We cannot afford to hesitate or wait,” said Shaked on Sunday. “We must take advantage of this window of opportunity immediately and begin to apply sovereignty over these areas,” she added.

At least for the time being, a right-wing government led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remains in power in Israel. However, President Reuven Rivlin has given Benny Gantz, leader of the Blue and White faction, a mandate to try to form a government that would be more oriented to the center and left of the political spectrum.

Shaked believes that her bill would have majority support in the Knesset. Working in its favor is that the localities mentioned in the legislation are seen as having broad parliamentary support as places where Israel would maintain control even if a peace deal could be reached with the Palestinian Authority.

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