Residents of Judea & Samaria protest outside the home of Benny Gantz, Defense Minister
Residents of Judea & Samaria protest outside the home of Benny Gantz, Defense Minister Hezki Baruch/Israel National News

Hundreds of residents of Judea and Samaria and the Jordan Valley are protesting outside the home of Defense Minister Benny Gantz in Rosh Ha'ayin on Thursday afternoon, demanding that the government authorize an Operation Protective Edge II in order to stop the current wave of Palestinian terrorism in its tracks.

ראש מועצת בית אל: 'בוז' ללפיד וגנץ
ראש מועצת בית אל: 'בוז' ללפיד וגנץ צילום: ערוץ 7

Binyamin Regional Council head Yisrael Gantz addressed the crowd at the protest, saying, "The residents of Judea and Samaria have been abandoned. We're here now to tell Defense Minister Benny Gantz - enough! We deserve security, and this is your responsibility to ensure. People asked me if this is a political demonstration and my reply is: If anyone thinks that we can wait until after elections to do something, the blood is upon his head."

"We are here as the people's representatives," said Shlomo Ne'eman, head of the Yesha Council and head of the Gush Etzion Regional Council. "It goes against our nature to stop our activities for something like this, and this is also the only full day between Yom Kippur and Sukkot [when religious Jews are busy preparing for the festival of Tabernacles -ed.]. People asked me why I'm here and I answer them: Right behind my house there are 7,000 residential units which have been frozen [at various degrees of construction]. The government won't authorize them, and why? Because they don't think we deserve it due to our 'behavior.' They follow the American line which says: don't authorize.

Shlomo Ne'eman at the protest
Shlomo Ne'eman at the protest Israel National News

"We don't have equal rights as citizens," he continued, "and now the enemy is rearing its head because the government lets it do so. The Prime Minister talks about two states, about a Palestinian state. The Defense Minister himself has revived the Palestinian Authority of unblessed memory. This is a terrorist and dictatorial organization that harms Arabs and shoots at Jews.

"We see our soldiers on the roads, working day and night and yet they can't bring results because they don't have the go-ahead from the government. We came here right after Yom Kippur in order to demand equal treatment for the residents of Judea and Samaria, nothing less than what all other Israeli citizens receive. We are going to continue this struggle."