Yossi Dagan with heads of the movement
Yossi Dagan with heads of the movementHillel Bar-On

Hundreds participated in an effort to expand a new village established in Samaria over the weekend. Named Ma'ale Yonatan, the new village drew significant crowds, who made their way there through the Nahal Kanna area to help build the community and clear the land.

The participants, including families and youth, took part in the construction, and attended a series of lectures into the night as well, together with Rabbi Uriel Ganzel, Rabbi Arele Harel, Rabbi Yossi Artziel, Rabbi Yehoshua Schmidt, and Rabbi Etiel Ariel. In addition, prmary candidate MK Simcha Rothman, head of the Samaria Regional Council Yossi Dagan, and the primary candidates for the Religious Zionism party Zvi Sukkot and Naama Zarbiv were in attendance.

The leaders of the settler group said: "We have come to settle the land. We repeat our constant call to the government to establish new settlements in all parts of the Land of Israel and in particular in Samaria. In the face of the massive [illegal] Arab takeover of land in Judea and Samaria, our presence in Ma'ale Yonatan is just a drop in the ocean. The government needs to act to restore its authority in Judea and Samaria and fix the lack of governance from its roots. It must approve new settlements in Judea and Samaria and act against the illegal Arab construction."

MK Simcha Rothman added: "The tenacity of the people of the Nachala movement in Ma'ale Yonatan and at every point in Judea and Samaria will win the day. 17 years after the expulsion from Gush Katif, the answer is the same: more settlement and more construction in the Land of Israel."

Regional Council chairman Yossi Dagan said: "The government has the power, but we have the time and faith. We will build new settlements because this is ours."

Zvi Sukkot encouraged the attendees "I remember that a small group of youth from the area had a dream to make a bike path here and believed that one day this area would flourish. And I remember thinking to myself, wow, there are 5-6 boys here and I'm not underestimating them, but they are living in a fantasy. They'll never settle this place that quickly. I have tears in my eyes now, seeing how well this place is doing. And I see here unlimited, stalwart dedication, and I am certain that it will eventually develop into a town of its own.