'I'm willing to give half a million Arabs citizenship'

Justice Minister Shaked says she's willing to give Area C Arabs Israeli citizenship in exchange for applying Israeli law to the area.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Ayelet Shaked
Ayelet Shaked
Noam Rivkin Fanton, Flash 90

"If we apply Israeli law to Area C, I'll live peacefully with the fact that we gave 400-500,000 Palestinians Israeli citizenship and allow them to vote in the Knesset's elections," Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (New Right) told Israel Hayom.

Area C, which makes up roughly 60% of Judea and Samaria, is under full Israeli control, as opposed to A, which is under Palestinian Authority (PA) security and civil administration, and Area B, under PA civil administration and Israeli security control.

All Jewish settlements are in Area C, but PA Arabs live in all three areas. Israelis are not allowed to enter Areas A and B, due to the danger involved.

Regarding US President Donald Trump's peace plan, Shaked said, "The choice to hold elections is a choice between a strong right and a weak left. After elections and before the coalition is created, Trump is supposed to publish his peace plan, which will bring [Benny] Gantz on a silver platter to the government. Therefore, we - and not Gantz - need to be the ones who are the Likud's central partners."

"Likud's ideology is influenced by its coalition partners. Our goal is to be the next-largest party, second to the Likud. Until we came, people voted right and received left. Thanks to us, we have a right-wing government. For this to continue, we need to be a party with a double-digit number of seats, and in the future, we will lead the government.

"We are in favor of applying Israeli law to Area C, where 100,000 Palestinians live. They will be able to choose to become citizens or residents, whichever they prefer."

When asked whether 400,000 residents of Jerusalem's Arab neighborhoods would also receive full Israeli citizenship and the right to vote in Israel's elections, Shaked said, "Jerusalem's residents choose to receive residency, not citizenship. But if we apply Israeli law to Area C, I'll live peacefully with having 400-500,000 Palestinians becoming Israeli citizens. And they can vote in the Knesset's elections. I'm not worried. Their birthrate is identical to our birthrate."