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MKs Meet in Building Slated for Demolition in East Jerusalem

National Union MKs meet in Beit Yehonatan, say that it should only be sealed off after illegal Arab homes in the area are destroyed.
By Elad Benari & Hezki Ezra
First Publish: 12/28/2010, 12:27 AM / Last Update: 12/28/2010, 1:14 AM

The National Union movement’s Knesset members held a meeting on Monday in the six-story Beit Yehonatan apartment complex in the Shiloach (Silwan) neighborhood in Jerusalem, just one day after Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat announced that he would delay the execution of an order to seal off the top stories of the building.


Party leader MK Ya’akov “Ketzaleh” Katz said during the meeting that it is “a shame” that MKs and members of the media had to arrive in Beit Yehonatan in bullet proof cars. “We’re sure that when the time comes when the State of Israel is led by the right political people, that this shame will be removed and the Jews, Arabs, and tourists will be able to come and visit and walk in Jerusalem’s streets normally and freely,” he said.

MK Dr. Aryeh Eldad said that while the decree of the Supreme Court is very important, the building should only be sealed off after the hundreds of Arab houses that were illegally built in the area are destroyed.

“We will not tolerate any selective law enforcement,” said Eldad. “And this is the demand of the Attorney General of Israel, who demands that first the law should be applied to the only Jewish house in this area, and only then the law should be enforced on all the illegal Arab houses. The only thing that we will never tolerate is selective law enforcement in Israel.”

“In Eretz Yisrael we have to look for ways of helping people to stay in the places which they built, and not to evacuate Jews from their own houses,” added Katz. “It happened in Europe sixty, seventy, and eighty years ago. We are not living in the Diaspora. We are living in the State of Israel, in Jerusalem.”

The National Union’s other two representatives in the Knesset, Dr. Michael Ben-Ari and Uri Ariel, also took part in the meeting.