45 Knesset members from all over the political spectrum (both left and right) have approached Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak, demanding that they act quickly and approve the master plan of the community of Itamar.
The MKs explained that an end must be put to the absurd situation that currently exists in Itamar: The community was established under a government decision, but since there is no town plan, the residents are condemned to live a life full of shortages.
The appeal by the MKs comes following the brutal massacre of Itamar residents Udi and Ruth Fogel and three of their children on Friday night, March 11. Terrorists who infiltrated the community entered the Fogel family home and mercilessly stabbed the parents and the children as they were sleeping in their beds. The fence around the town was not maintained by the IDF due to the undecided nature of its lands.
Among the signatories are five deputy ministers, including Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon, as well as ten MKs from Kadima.
“We were shocked by the great suffering undergone by the residents of Itamar, who in the past 28 years since the establishment of the community, have already buried 22 residents who were victims of terrorism,” wrote the MKs. “In recent years life has turned unbearable in Itamar, due to the fact that the community’s master plan has not yet been signed, a fact which stops the residents from being provided with the most basic needs in terms of education and security. This is despite the fact that the last bureaucratic obstacle has recently been removed and the only thing that delays the approval of the plan is a signature by the Defense Minister.”
The MKs added that the appeal letter comes from their deep sense of responsibility and solidarity with the residents of Itamar, and out of the realization that the brutal terrorists who murdered babies and children in their beds would have committed the same criminal act against children wherever they are, be it in Tel Aviv or in Itamar.
“Our goal is to help the residents and enable them to live a normal life in Itamar like in Tel Aviv, regardless of the political debate,” said the MKs, who demand from the Prime Minister and Minister of Defense: “Immediately approve the budget for all the security needs of the community, and put an end to this intolerable situation in which the bureaucracy repeatedly pays an unbearable price and residents are forced to bear the heavy security costs themselves. The responsibility for the security of residents must be transferred to the IDF. Immediately begin building permanent buildings both for the local school and hesder yeshiva headed by Rabbi Ronsky, and put an end to this shameful situation in which educational institutions operate in old mobile homes that are crumbling. Doing this is the way to perpetuate the memory of the Fogel family who was essentially a family of education and of Torah.”
In addition to the above letter, MK Meir Shitrit (Kadima) has also sent a personal letter to the Prime Minister in which he outlined the main requirements concerning Itamar.