'There's almost no construction anywhere in Judea and Samaria'

Jewish Home minister claims de facto building freeze in place, calls on PM to end restrictions on construction.

Contact Editor
Eliran Aharon,

Uri Ariel
Uri Ariel
Eliran Aharon

Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel (Jewish Home) on Sunday visited the protest tent erected by residents of Beit El in front of the Prime Minister’s Office to show his support for the demonstrators and their demand that the Netanyahu government fulfill its promise to reduce restrictions on building in Judea and Samaria and to authorize the 296 housing units pledged for Beit El.

Ariel, who in the previous government served as the Housing Minister, claimed that despite statements by the Prime Minister to the contrary, Judea and Samaria – and even Jerusalem - are under a de facto building freeze.

“Unfortunately we have seen years of neglect and lack of building in Beit El. But the situation in Beit El is similar to that of other places, including Jerusalem.”

“I call upon the Prime Minister to remove all the [building] freezes and to let us live.”

According to the Agriculture Minister, even towns not affiliated with the Religious Zionist movement have suffered from the freeze, including large towns near the Green Line.

“There’s a sense that the Prime Minister is making a mockery of Religious Zionism, but this is true also of other settlers as well. They aren’t building in Beitar Illit,” said Ariel, referencing the predominantly haredi city south of Jerusalem. “They aren’t building in Ariel – there’s barely any building anywhere in Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem. There’s no other situation like this anywhere else on earth. The one place where Jews freeze other Jews is here. Please, Mr. Prime Minister, remove the freeze and let us live.”