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Netanyahu: Building Freeze? No Way

Prime Minister denies reports that a freeze is in the cards as Obama prepares to visit.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 2/7/2013, 8:47 PM

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem
Reuters

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu made clear Thursday that Israel will not agree to a freeze on Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria as a precondition for negotiations with the Palestinian Authority.

According to Channel 2, sources close to Netanyahu said that reports regarding this matter "do not reflect reality."

Reports about a possible building freeze began after news of a planned visit by President Barack Obama to Israel became known.

Haaretz (pronounced huh-AH-retz), a generally anti-Israeli newspaper published in Israel, reported Thursday that National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror said in closed conversations that construction for Jews in Judea and Samaria "causes Israel to lose the support of its greatest friends in the West."

"It is impossible to explain the subject of construction in the settlements to Chancellor Merkel or even to Israel's good friend, the prime minister of Canada," Amidror reportedly said.