Israeli ministers reject bills promoting two-state solution

One bill, submitted by MK Merav Michaeli (Labor), would make it illegal to build beyond 1949 armistice lines, unless it is approved by 80 MKs.

January 6, 2014 01:36
1 minute read.
Labor MK Merav Michaeli.

Merav Michaeli 370. (photo credit: Courtesy Knesset)

Ministers rejected two Labor bills meant to promote a two-state solution by preventing the government from annexing land and building in settlements on Sunday.

One bill, submitted by MK Merav Michaeli (Labor), would make it illegal to build beyond 1949 armistice lines, unless it is approved by 80 MKs.

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Michaeli argues in the bill’s explanatory portion that construction over the Green Line is the greatest obstacle to a permanent peace treaty with the Palestinians and the establishment of two states for two nations.

According to Michaeli, construction that is not meant to help the Palestinians or fulfill military needs is against international law and leads to economic boycotts of Israel.

“The controversy surrounding construction beyond the Green Line is at its height these days. This is the time to do what needed to be done long ago: To think and examine whether or not it’s good for Israel every time something is being built in Judea and Samaria,” Michaeli said before the vote, expressing hope ministers would agree with her.

Another initiative, nicknamed the “two-state bill” and proposed by MK Hilik Bar (Labor) would not allow any unilateral annexation and specifies that the final status of territory in Judea, Samaria and Gaza would only be decided in a treaty bringing about a twostate solution.

Bar submitted the legislation, which was signed by MKs from Labor, Meretz and Shas, in response to last week’s ministerial vote to approve Likud Beytenu MK Miri Regev’s bill annexing the Jordan Valley. It was timed it to coincide with US Secretary of State John Kerry’s visit to Israel.

“This bill will make it possible, once and for all, for coalition parties to show whether or not they’re willing to pass a historic law showing their position on the two-state solution,” Bar said. “This doesn’t hurt Israel at all; it just encourages the government and the Palestinians to end the conflict with two states for two nations, because any other solution would be destructive for Israel’s future, security and status.”

Unilateral annexation, Bar said, would be a “death blow to negotiations and efforts to bring peace.”

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