Gabbay: Annexing Judea and Samaria would be a catastrophe

Labor chief blasts proposal to extend Israeli sovereignty over Judea, Samaria, says idea would be a 'disaster' for the State of Israel.

David Rosenberg,

Avi Gabbay
Avi Gabbay
Yonatan Zindel/Flash90

Zionist Union chief Avi Gabbay on Sunday slammed a proposal to begin applying Israeli sovereignty to Judea and Samaria, and praised Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s decision to defer discussion of the bill in the cabinet.

Earlier on Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation acceded to Netanyahu’s call to postpone a planned discussion on a bill drafted by Land of Israel Lobby chairman Yoav Kish (Likud) which would begin applying Israeli sovereignty to Judea and Samaria. Due to the recent clashes with Syria and Iran along Israel’s northern border over the weekend, the committee agreed that the government must focus its attention on security issues, rather than promoting new legislation.

In recent years, the Prime Minister has shelved bills which would apply Israeli sovereignty to towns in Judea and Samaria, including a proposal by MK Kish last year which sought to extend Israeli sovereignty to the town of Maaleh Adumim, just east of Jerusalem.

Gabbay expressed his support for the committee’s decision to push off discussion on the bill, which he argued was dangerous for the State of Israel.

“It’s good that the outrageous bill to annex Judea and Samaria was dropped from the government’s agenda,” Gabbay wrote on Facebook.

“Annexing Judea and Samaria would cause political harm to and constitute a disaster for the State of Israel, and hopefully the government will never raise the proposal again – not just because of the current strife on our northern border, but because it is in Israel’s interests to separate from the Palestinians.”

“Unfortunately, I’m really not sure if the ‘land for corruption’ deal – whereby Netanyahu buys some quiet from his coalition partners and indulgences for his corruption in exchange for annexation – has really been dropped from the agenda.”