Ayelet Shaked
Ayelet Shaked Photo: Flash90

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked spoke on Monday a Gush Katif and Northern Samaria Commemoration Center's annual Katif Conference to commemorate the 17th anniversary of the disengagement from Gush Katif and responded to the statements made by Shas Chairman Aryeh Deri who said that "Bennett and Shaked are not religious Zionists".

"I suggest to Aryeh Deri that he not decide who is and who is not part of religious Zionism. Aryeh Deri has seen in the last year how many positions of power previously held by Shas are filled by religious Zionists. It wasn't easy for him," Shaked said.

In her opinion, Yamina sitting in the current government was very important: "We implemented the values for which we were elected. In the last year, the municipalities in Judea and Samaria received bigger budgets, the religious Zionist school systems received a budget, on the border with Gaza there is quiet, and there was a great Flag March on Jerusalem Day without giving into threats Hamas had issued. There were more Jews ascending to the Temple Mount, and we implemented the law to offset the salaries of terrorists."

"Because of a lot of noise and fake news, they don't look at the facts. I ask that you judge us according to the facts. In the end, we preserved the values ​​of religious Zionism and strengthened the State of Israel in many ways," said Shaked.

She added, "I can't argue with feelings, and I respect everyone and also understand the anger at us, but I call on people to look at the facts. When you look seriously, you see a slightly different picture."

When asked if she would support a full right-wing government she responded: "The last year has been difficult for all of us. We have seen that a narrow government is very difficult to maintain. When there is a narrow government of only one party, half of the people feel that this is not their country. For many years I only wanted a right-wing government and within this government, I am working to implement right-wing values. No statement or action I have done has contradicted the values ​​for which I was elected. We need to put the boycotts aside and establish a broad government."

Shaked was asked about sitting with the United Arab List (Ra'am): "We learn from the past and examine what we did. This is a lesson we learned from this government. It is not appropriate for a government to depend on a party that is not a Zionist one."

Finally, she spoke about the Zionist Spirit party, which she will be leading in the upcoming elections. "There is are strong and good forces that want to join us. Today there are excellent people in religious Zionism. In the end, our party will be half national religious and the other half both traditional and secular. There is a lot of support from the public for the party and it has a lot of diversity within it."