Rabbi Zalman Melamed:
'More empty promises - I don't believe Netanyahu'

Beit El Yeshiva dean believes PM will renege on latest promise to build 300 homes in his community and will find more excuses for delays.

Uzi Baruch ,

Rabbi Melamed
Rabbi Melamed
Eliran Aharon

Rabbi Zalman Baruch Melamed, a leading religious Zionist rabbi and the head of the Beit El Yeshiva, refuses to accept Prime Minister Netanyahu's additional promise that 300 housing units in Beit El will be marketed in September.

"I do not accept this promise and I do not believe it, it is just empty words. We will not agree to stop the struggle, we must continue it until the prime minister signs on the construction, as promised by his emissaries five years ago," he told Arutz Sheva. "We are not interested in morepromises. Making additional promises is not the fulfillment of the original promise."

Rabbi Melamed estimates that in September the Americans will begin political meetings with the Arabs and Prime Minister Netanyahu will again stop marketing the apartments because of "political restraints."

"We are past the point of promises," the rabbi said. "The prime minister must sign today to implement the promise he made to the community five years ago."

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu met Thursday with the mayor of Beit El to discuss the government’s long-standing pledge to build nearly 300 housing units in the town.

In 2012, Netanyahu promised to construct 296 new homes in Beit El, after the Supreme Court ordered 30 demolished in the Samaria town. In the nearly five years since, however, no progress has been made towards fulfilling that promise. In fact, construction in Beit El has been completely frozen, with no new homes approved for the community of more than 6,000.

During his meeting with Beit El’s mayor, Netanyahu said the 296 housing units would be approved soon, and that permission to market the units would be given this September.

MK Bezalel Samotrich (Jewish Home) responded to the prime minister's latest promise by tweeting: "[Only] a sucker would believe Netanyahu's promises to keep promises he has already promised five times and never kept."

Last week, residents of Beit El and their supporters erected a protest tent opposite the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem. Demonstrators demanded the Prime Minister end the building freeze in Beit El and fulfill his promise to build the new homes there.