Daniella Weiss: Progress in regulating Evyatar

Settlement leader says Yair Lapid's opposition to regulating Samaria community lip service to the left, government will keep agreement.

Shimon Cohen ,

Evyatar
Evyatar
Yoni Kempinski

Daniella Weiss, leader of the Nachala movement and one of the leaders of the negotiations to regulate the Samaria community of Evyatar, spoke to Arutz Sheva about the implementation of the agreement in light of Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid's staunch opposition to even the establishment of a yeshiva at the site.

"Thank God there is progress," says Weiss, adding that there has recently been a "tour of the director in the field and there are teams working on it according to the outline for establishing a yeshiva, including planning the site where there will be a yeshiva and in the future the community of Evyatar."

"I see a tendency for the government to live up to its public commitment, and for the time being we see Arabs in the area trying to put spokes in the wheels and claim it is private land, but without documents to establish this. As a movement, we continue to form the nucleus, which today numbers 53 families who continue to maintain the connection between them," she says.

In light of the past experience of Arabs who presented problematic documents that led to the destruction of Migron, Amona and other localities, Weiss says that this trend is indeed worrying but lawyers and professionals who have examined the matter can determine that these are false claims that do not hold water. This time, she said, care must be taken that the lies are uncovered at an early stage, so that an expulsion scenario does not recur in which only after the community is uprooted does it become clear that the documents presented by the Arabs were false.

At this point, IDF soldiers and Border Police are in the area, and according to Weiss, the Arabs understand that "this is an achievement for the settlements, despite the difficulty of the outline, and that the Israeli government does not buy the lie of them being private lands."

Is the term introduced in the agreement according to which the land survey will be carried out as soon as possible too vague? Does it not allow interested parties to extend the time indefinitely? "There was a big debate with the defense minister about this phrase," Weiss reveals, adding that she does not want to dwell on an interpretation that can be given to this term but to engage "in what we believe in," as she puts it.

"Given that there have been no habits in recent years to do land surveys of this kind, a new route needs to be opened here and our job is to expedite this newly opened route. The government, both the Civil Administration and the regional councils, need to be put back into action. It is difficult, and our job, in favor of expanding settlement and establishing new settlements, is to re-oil this rusty machine. The defense establishment should also do this with professionals and not settle for one paper or another that an Arab brings from the neighboring village."

Responding to criticism and opposition from Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid, Weiss says: "His criticism is not an attack on us either. The left also understands that he is in a government of checks and balances, so they know that if they want to fight against the Land of Israel we will know how to fight back."

"I expect Yair Lapid to speak the language of Zionism, which is a common language for all of us," she says, estimating that Lapid's words are nothing but a "lip service to his constituency and perhaps to those on the far left. He represents a section of government where these things have to be said. I encourage him to look at things with open eyes and moreover, I recommend that he take his vehicle and drive to Evyatar and understand that the community of Evyatar protects him more than he protects Evyatar. The illusion that one can manage in Gush Dan without Judea and Samaria is an illusion that few still believe in. In the name of this basic Zionism, security Zionism, I believe that the common denominator is broader and more powerful than the clash."

"Governments generally abide by agreements, even if politicians are less likely to abide by agreements," she said.

As for the expected pressures from the world, Weiss says that it should be noted that "in all the political turmoil around Evyatar, the world kept a low profile, and this is a living space that allowed us to raise Evyatar's flag, and could have caused Netanyahu to take advantage of this. In the meantime, the people of Israel are waking up to the issue of Evyatar and have realized that it is not possible to give the Arabs the opportunity to surround the Jordan Valley as they surround Wadi Ara."

Is she optimistic? Weiss prefers not to make headlines of this kind, but to formulate the issue gently and state that "there is a path that leads to the establishment of Evyatar as a settlement for all intents and purposes."



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