'Traitor' mayor?
Afula shocked by instant Arab neighborhood

All 48 residential plots offered in recent tender go to Arabs, with evidence of price fixing; residents, terror victim's family in uproar.

Gil Ronen ,

Protest after murder of  Shelly Dadon (file)
Protest after murder of Shelly Dadon (file)
Hagai Aharon / Flash 90

Residents of the city of Afula in the Galilee were shocked in recent days to learn that an "instant Arab village" has been established in their midst. Some are also alleging that the mayor of Afula, Yitzhak Meron, is complicit in making this possible.

Hundreds of residents took part in an emotional demonstration Sunday night and faced off with the mayor, whom they called a "traitor" and accused of corrupt dealings that enabled the Arab land grab in the Afula Ilit neighborhood.

Ilona Goldenstein, an organizer of the struggle, told Arutz Sheva that in recent months, a tender for 48 plots in Afula Ilit was published – and it turned out last week that the winners of all 48 tenders were Arabs.

"This upsets us greatly, as residents of Afula," she said, "because we are not talking about a single family that won a tender but about 48 plots that created an Arab village inside Afula – a village that will transform the city in a way that will make it unrecognizable. All this was done without anyone asking us for our opinions."

Goldenstein explained that the tender was advertised in a very low-key manner and that there is evidence of price fixing, since many of the winning offers made by Arabs were nearly identical.

Ya'akov Dadon, whose daughter Shelly was brutally murdered by an Arab terrorist last year, said that while his daughter was stabbed 17 times, upon learning of the neighborhood, he felt that he was "stabbed 50 more times."

Residents said that they already live in fear of Arab violence and that the Arab neighborhood will make their lives unbearable.

Meron told the angry residents that he is awaiting a legal opinion about the tender, especially regarding the possibility that many of the winners coordinated their bids.