Min. Ariel Snipes at PM over Broken Promises

One week from the elections, Jewish Home minister launches attack on Netanyahu over building freeze.

Gil Ronen ,

Ariel and Netanyahu (file)
Ariel and Netanyahu (file)
Flash 90

With elections just a week away, Jewish Home's Housing and Construction Minister Uri Ariel launched a frontal attack on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, accusing him of failing to fulfill his promises, time after time.

The attack appears to be intended for the ears of nationalists, as Jewish Home and Likud compete over their support.

Min. Ariel said that Netanyahu personally promised him several times, after the terrorist massacre of the Fogel family at Itamar, that a new zoning plan would be issued for Itamar, to enable the construction of houses – but failed to deliver.

"Four years ago,” Ariel said at the Ramle Conference, “after the murder of the Fogel family, the Prime Minister promised to approve... a zoning plan – he promised me personally and Zambish [Secretary-general of the Amana construction society, Ze'ev Hever – ed.] as well. We are now four years after and nada, zero, nothing, zilch.”

Ariel also referred to promises made by Netanyahu in order to enable the demolition of part of the Ulpana Neighborhood in Beit El, which a court ruled was illegal.

"Three years ago, the prime minister asked Rabbi Zalman Melamed to quietly evict the Beit El Ulpana, and promised that for every house demolished, ten would be built,” he said. “Did it happen? no. Just don't ask me why, because I really don't intend to explain the behavior that mostly hurts our historical justness.”

"In the reality that we live in, when there is a freeze on planning and construction in the city,” he intoned, “is this the unified Jerusalem? When the most senior political echelon does not make it possible to build in Jerusalem, is this the united Jerusalem? When Jews cannot visit the graves of their parents at the Mount of Olives without fearing for their lives – is this Israeli sovereignty?

"The list is long and I will give one more example, when the prime minister does not allow a minister to ascend to the Temple Mount, is this sovereignty? Is this the complete Jerusalem? Is this the Holy of Holies? This must change from the base, people must understand that Jerusalem is our holy city and after that, it is our capital, and it makes the existence of the Jewish people possible. We are in a completely different reality – I pray that after the elections we can change reality.”

"A very strong body is needed,” he added, “to change the shameful situation in Jerusalem. We must not despair and say there is nothing to be done. In Greater Jerusalem, too, there is a freeze; this is the third election in which we are told that we will build around Maaleh Adumim – so are we building? No. Actually, someone is building – Bedouins are building illegally. The Prime Minister allows the European Union to build in these areas without tearing down the illegal construction. I am being precise with the facts.”