Yesha Council Chairman David Elhayani called for the replacement of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu with a new leader whose actions would be more in line with the official positions of the Likud party.
In an interview with Arutz Sheva, Elhayani referred to the criticism leveled at him from the right, which blamed his strident opposition to the Trump Administration's peace plan for causing the historic opportunity to apply sovereignty in Judea and Samaria to be missed. "I am proud and we are proud that we prevented this bad plan," he said, noting that he believes the American plan was intended only to bring about the establishment of a Palestinian state and would eventually lead to the evacuation of tens of thousands of settlers.
He said it was not for nothing that the plan included dozens of mentions of the term 'Palestinian state' and it was not for nothing that it maintained Palestinian territorial continuity. According to him, all of these were intended to lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state over seventy percent of Judea and Samaria, and therefore it was good and proper to throw the plan in the trash.
However, he states that the one who guilty of removing the issue of sovereignty from the agenda is Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu alone, who Elhayani believes is acting in President Trump's interests instead of the State of Israel's. Netanyahu, he said, must promote Israeli interests, including the application of Israeli sovereignty over Area C, without any connection to the American plan.
Elhayani believes that the 'Deal of the Century' was promoted by Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, out of a desire to prove to the American people that Trump has the power to do what other presidents before him have not been able to do, produce a true peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs.
In light of all this, Elhayani called for Netanyahu to be replaced by another leader who will act according to the Likud's ideology and not according to foreign interests. In his opinion, the Likud has enough leaders who can stand at the head of the party and replace Netanyahu. "Netanyahu should be thanked for the years he have given to the people of Israel, for his achievements in the fields of economics and security, but now is the time for a different leadership."
When asked whether Netanyahu's replacement will not produce a sense of achievement and victory for opposition MKs Avigdor Liberman and Yair Lapid, Elhayani stated that making way for the next generation in a party's leadership is a good and healthy move that strengthens the party and does not weaken it.
In his remarks, Elhayani also criticized the prime minister for the ongoing freeze in Judea and Samaria. He said Netanyahu was allowing the Americans to intervene in planning and construction considerations, as they had openly and explicitly admitted to the Americans themselves. This intervention, he says, is what prevents the approval of the necessary building permits. Elhayani declared that at the end of the day, the final word on the possibility of continued construction are Netanyahu's alone.