MKs: Promises not kept? We'll be absent from Knesset votes

Coalition MKs threaten to be absent from important Knesset votes unless Netanyahu approves budget for Judea and Samaria bypass roads.

Contact Editor
Eliran Aharon,

Protest tent outside PM's home
Protest tent outside PM's home
Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

A number of MKs from the Jewish Home and the Likud are planning to be absent from Knesset votes that are important to the coalition, if Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu fails to keep his promise and approve the budget necessary for security in Judea and Samaria and for the construction of bypass roads in the region.

On Wednesday, Netanyahu announced his intention to approve 800 million shekels for the paving of the bypass roads, but Judea and Samaria leaders have said that they will not remove the protest tent they erected opposite the Prime Minister's Residence until the promise is fully realized.

Over the last two days, the protest tent has been visited by ministers and MKs who expressed their support for the protest, which is led by Shomron Regional Council head Yossi Dagan, the head of the Beit Aryeh Council Avi Na'im and the head of the Kiryat Arba Council Malachi Levinger. Families of terrorist victims have also arrived at the protest tent and announced that they will not leave until Netanyahu keeps his word.

MK Shuli Mualem-Refaeli (Jewish Home), who visited the protest tent, said, "The money was promised several times, and nothing has changed on the ground. If the promises had been realized, we would not be finding ourselves again and again coming to visit families who lost their loved ones on these dangerous roads."

"The Prime Minister must take care of business by paving the bypass roads, deploying a cellular network and of course implementing the security components required on the roads and in the communities themselves," she added.

MK Bezalel Smotrich (the Jewish Home) said, "A week ago, 297 housing units were approved in Beit El, which the Prime Minister promised five years ago. We have no intention of waiting for five years with this promise. Unfortunately, I am not able to rely only on the Prime Minister's promises.”

"We want to see the budget appear in the budget books, in a government decision, in a discussion of the Knesset Finance Committee. Until this happens, the budget does not exist as far as I'm concerned,” he continued. “We must remember that even these 800 million shekels are not enough. This money is required to ensure life, not quality of life.”

Culture and Sport Minister Miri Regev (Likud) promised that the 800 million shekels would be approved by the political-security cabinet.

"I spoke with the prime minister this morning," Regev said, "and he promised me that the money would be approved by the cabinet on Sunday. I feel the pain of the bereaved families. This is the first thing I did this morning when I arrived at the Knesset. I went to the prime minister and asked to understand what was happening.”








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