In the background of a wave of terrorist attacks, Ministers, municipal leaders and members of the Knesset Lobby for the Land of Israel met tonight (Sunday) to begin a campaign to extend full Israeli sovereignty over Ma'aleh Adumim.
Among the participants was Ma'aleh Adumim Mayor Benny Kashriel, heads of the Knesset Land of Israel Lobby, MKs Yoav Kish (Likud) and Bezalel Smotrich (Jewish Home), Ministers Ze'ev Elkin (Likud), Uri Ariel (Jewish Home) and Haim Katz (Likud), and MKs Robert Ilatov (Yisrael Beytenu), Mickey Levy (Yesh Atid), Elazar Stern (Yesh Atid), Shuli Mualem-Refaeli (Jewish Home) and Eli Cohen (Kulanu).
The attendees signed a 'Declaration of Sovereignty of Ma'ale Adumim,' in which they undertake to act through any and all democratic means to pass legislation that will apply full Israeli sovereignty over Maale Adumim, even in the face of international opposition.
The declaration states, in part: "We the undersigned view Israeli sovereignty over Ma'ale Adumim as part of an Independent Israel, regardless of any political agreements, as a correct step, which is Zionist, necessary and responsible. The nations of the world should accept [this decision] with understanding. But even if it provokes international opposition, the State of Israel should do so because it is her right and her duty.
We hereby declare our support for the plan, Israeli [sovereignty for] Ma'ale Adumim, and show our solidarity with the call, that 'It's time for sovereignty' and [to express] our commitment to achieving the plan to apply Israeli sovereignty over Ma'ale Adumim. This is the correct and necessary move."
Mayor Benny Kashriel said, "Ma'ale Adumim is an integral part of the State of Israel as Rabin stated in 1974, as well as the Prime Ministers who followed him. Ma'ale Adumim will be the first step in applying the law [of the State of Israel] to the rest of Judea and Samaria. We are on a campaign which is not easy, but a large majority of people are ready to struggle for [applying Israeli] sovereignty so that Ma'ale Adumim will be an integral part of Israel."
Chairman of the Israel Lobby, MK Yoav Kish said, 'We are applying appropriate and necessary pressure so that [Prime Minister] Netanyahu will take this step. It is clear to everyone that Netanyahu is under pressure but it's time to put everything aside and to say in a clear, sharp voice that Ma'ale Adumim is an Israeli city in every respect.
The message is obvious, the Land of Israel belongs to us, and today we are applying that sovereignty to Maale Adumim. This is the first step and I am proud to be at the forefront of the struggle. In two weeks time the bill will be presented and we intend to submit the proposal already in the present session of the Knesset."
MK Bezalel Smotrich, the head of the Israel Lobby clarified, "We are now marking the goal with the understanding that policy debate does not bring us anywhere. We have to bring the debate to a resolution and the starting point is to apply sovereignty over Ma'ale Adumim.
''The sky will not fall, just as the sky did not fall when we extended [Israeli] sovereignty over Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. This step is correct in terms of nationalism and Zionism but is also correct in terms of security" said Smotrich.
Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze'ev Elkin stressed that "especially at this time, when a young girl was murdered in her sleep simply because she was Jewish, the only answer to terrorism is [continued] construction and applying [Israeli] sovereignty.
"They don't want us here? Not only are we staying, but we will also build and also extend sovereignty to here in Maale Adumim. Today I signed the declaration of Land of Israel Lobby to apply sovereignty over Ma'ale Adumim and I pledge to continue to work so that it is carried out," added Elkin.
Welfare Minister Haim Katz said, "It is about time, after 40 years, to come and declare that Ma'ale Adumim is an integral part of Israel. I pledge and guarantee my support to extend sovereignty to Ma'ale Adumim. This is the correct and necessary Israeli move. I will be a partner, an activist and messenger until we achieve the desired result."
Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel gave a message to members of the Security Cabinet. "I call on the cabinet ministers to make serious decisions as the cabinet should. They must make the decision to have sovereignty over Ma'ale Adumim as [the verse] states, 'We should go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it' (Bamidbar 13:30).