The Yesha Council released a statement in response to the death of Shimon Peres.
“In this hour we remind ourselves of Peres’ greatest contributions to lay the groundwork for Israel’s defense since its inception, and his great contribution to the establishment of Jewish settlements in Samaria,” the statement read.
In the statement, the council noted that Peres was “one of the founders of the state and visionaries of the Israeli people even in the settlements which he developed from their very beginning. Throughout the disputes over the years, we will remember the constant support to the security of the settlements, the creation of settlements in Samaria, the creation of Ofra and the progress of an infrastructure for the construction of additional settlements.”
Mayor of Ariel Eliyahu Shaviro said that “Shimon Peres, of blessed memory, contributed greatly to the security of Israel and worked tirelessly for peace with our neighbors.”
“Peres also laid several cornerstones for the settlements," Shaviro said, "The residents of Ariel and the entire nation of Israel is mourning the loss of an incredible leader who worked tirelessly for his nation.”
Yochai Damari, Director of the Hevron Hills Council, said, “I bow my head to the man who worked to hard for our country.”
“He worked tirelessly for the creation of the state. Settlements were a point of contention for him, specifically for everything connected to Oslo but he was also a part of the establishment of many settlements and was one of the first to pave the way for the construction of Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria.”
Noam Arnon, spokesperson for the Hevron Hills settlement, said that “Peres has a central role in shaping this country since its birth. His role in the creation of the map of settlements in Judea and Samaria will always be remembered.”
Arnon mentioned that when Peres was Minister of Defense he granted the license for the opening of the Avraham Avinu Synagogue in Hevron which allowed the rebuilding of Jewish settlement in Hevron. “With that,” Arnon said, “he did make mistakes, one of which was the creation of Palestinian terrorist authority.”
“Now is the time to remember his good deeds and his contribution to the Jewish people and the State of Israel. We will mourn him with all of Israel, and we will aim to continue his vision of building this state and bringing true peace to all its citizens,” Arnon added.