Gideon Sa'ar:
'Netanyahu has frozen Jerusalem - we will build it'

New Hope chief unveils plan for massive construction in Jerusalem, slams PM for appealing to PLO in bid to win Arab votes.

Hezki Baruch ,

Gideon Sa'ar (right)
Gideon Sa'ar (right)
Hezki Baruch

New Hope chief Gideon Sa'ar presented plans Tuesday morning for construction projects in Jerusalem.

During the press conference, Sa'ar accused Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu of freezing construction in the capital, and warned that the city's Jewish majority was being whittled away.

"For the last twelve years, during which Netanyahu was Prime Minister, the Jewish majority in Jerusalem has been reduced, with Netanyahu freezing construction in Jewish neighborhoods in the city."

"A government under my leadership will build in Givat HaMatos and Atarot," Sa'ar said, referring to plans for a massive expansion of the Givat HaMatos neigborhood in southern Jerusalem and the building of a residential neighborhood in and around the site of the old Jerusalem airport in northern Jerusalem.

Both areas are beyond the pre-1967 "Green Line" delineating Israel's borders from the 1949 armistice, and international pressure has been applied to Israel to dissuade it from building up either area.

Sa'ar also slammed Netanyahu over recent reports that the Likud had engaged in secret talks with Palestine Liberation Organization members to elicit Palestinian Authority backing to win over Israeli Arab voters.

"Yesterday something very serious as revealed: an attempt by Netanyahu to bring in the PLO into the elections of the State of Israel."

"That is incredibly serious, and points to the fact that Netanyahu has lost any sense of embarassment and has crossed every red line and is willing to do anything to stay in power. We can only imagine what he will do for it."

"For a while now, Netanyahu has acted like someone who places his personal interests over the good of the country, and he cannot speak on behalf of the nationalist camp. The PLO and the Palestinian Authority filed a suit against the IDF and its soldiers. Anyone who can do this now cannot represent the nationalist camp in the State of Israel."

"If these things were done without Netanyahu's knowledge, Netanyahu should fire the deputy minister without delay.”

New Hope candidate, Ofer Berkovitch added: "Gideon Saar and New Hope have taken a very strong position to strengthen Jerusalem, secure its Zionist future, advance the city’s standing as a functionally and economically strong city, a city that is a bustling international cultural and tourism center, indeed there is a wealth of diversity here unlike anything else in Israel. I am proud to be your partner in this, and to join the excellent team of New Hope under your leadership.”