The US administration desires to begin anew with Israel when it comes to settlements, an adviser to President Donald Trump told Samaria Regional Council head Yossi Dagan when the two met briefly in Washington.
Dagan was one of three settler leaders who traveled to the US to attend Trump’s inauguration and to meet with senators, congressmen and members of the president’s team.
They all spoke of a new feeling of acceptance they felt in Washington.
In a short video created by the Samaria Regional Council, Dagan is shown meeting with Trump adviser George Papadopoulos.
The two can be seen sitting at a table, where Dagan is talking with him about the Jordan Valley.
In the next shot, Papadopoulos speaks to the camera with Dagan standing at his side. When he references the West Bank, he refers to it as Judea and Samaria, which is used by the Right in Israel.
“We had an excellent meeting with Yossi and we hope that the people of Judea and Samaria will have a great 2017. We are looking forward to ushering in a new relationship with all of Israel, including the historic Judea and Samaria,” Papadopoulos said.
Dagan’s spokeswoman, Esther Alush, said one of the politicians Dagan met with in Washington said that soon “we won’t have to call the settlements, ‘settlements.’” Dagan also met with Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller, who was on Trump’s shot list to become secretary of agriculture. Miller plans to bring a trade mission to Israel in March, which will include a visit to Samaria.
Dagan said the political and administration officials he met with were sympathetic to the settlement enterprise. From Washington, he called on Netanyahu to move forward with plan to annex Ma’aleh Adumim and to increase building in Judea and Samaria.
He warned that if Netanyahu did not take action, he would call for a meeting of the Likud central committee to discuss the matter.
Efrat Council head Oded Revivi, who is the chief foreign envoy for the Council of Jewish Communities of Judea and Samaria, said he also held meetings while in Washington and felt the same level of support that Dagan expressed.
He cautioned, however, that Netanyahu was correct to wait until meeting with Trump to make any major moves.
“They are waiting to hear what Netanyahu wants,” said Revivi, who urged Netanyahu to come to his meeting with the Trump administration prepared to lay out his plan to move forward.
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