Welfare Minister Meir Cohen was completely wrong when he called to demolish “isolated settlements”, MK Ayelet Shaked (Bayit Yehudi) said on Sunday.
She was referring to Cohen’s comments during a cultural event in Holon on Saturday, in which he said that “isolated settlements should be dismantled right now, without waiting for peace negotiations."
"These settlements cost us a lot of money and we can definitely partially dismantle them right now,” Cohen said. “Everything must be done to ensure that we are not thought of as doing everything possible to avoid negotiations. We must come to the negotiating table and to strive for peace.”
Responding to the remarks in an interview with Arutz Sheva on Sunday, MK Shaked said that the members of her party respect Minister Cohen and cooperate with him on many issues, but believe his remarks were out of line. She added that she and MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli will meet Cohen on Monday over this.
While Shaked that she was not surprised by the remarks against the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, given that the Yesh Atid party clarified during the election campaign that it supports the two-state pattern yet opposes dividing Jerusalem, "What shocked me in Minister Cohen’s remarks was the attack on the settlers.”
“I don’t know where this came from” after a month in which Evyatar Borovsky, a father of five, was murdered at the Tapuach junction and rock throwing terrorism has been on the increase in the region, she added.
MK Shaked said that Cohen is a true Zionist with an open mind and as such she insists on speaking to him in order to get him to see things differently.
She acknowledged that one possible argument Cohen may present is that the tense security situation is precisely the reason why communities should not be placed in isolated areas that require heavy investments in security, but said that this excuse is wrong because it is concessions of this kind that encourage terrorism.
"We have a good relationship with Minister Cohen and will try to convince him that he was wrong," said Shaked.