Dan Meridor 311.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Just as one might count down to the end of a religious holiday, MK Danny Danon
(Likud) already knows the exact moment the 10-month moratorium on new settlement
construction will end.
That would be 6:06 p.m. Tel Aviv time on September
26, he told The Jerusalem Post.
Danon said that he and opponents of the
freeze were not planning to let it last any longer than that.
the clock on his Web site that monitors the number of weeks, hours and
until the moratorium expires shows that it ends that day at midnight, he
that for all practical purposes, it will will stop in the evening.
the sun sets, people will start to build,” he said.
Danon told the Post
that opponents of the freeze are already planning a large ceremony in
for that moment, complete with tractors that will break ground for new
added that they are already in the process of hiring buses to bring at
Likud party members to an event that will be held together with the
He was inspired to go public with the plan after
hearing Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor tell Army Radio on Tuesday
that there would be only a limited amount of building once the
Meridor added that the moratorium should be extended in areas of the
that are likely to become part of a future Palestinian state, although
should resume in settlements expected to be part of Israel in any final
“It is not right to build in areas that will go to
Palestinians [after negotiations are completed], but it is right to
building in areas that will belong to Israel, such as Ma’aleh Adumim and
Etzion,” said Meridor, who stressed that his remarks reflected his own
opinion and not the official stance of the government.
Binyamin Netanyahu has insisted that no change was made to the
deadline, and many of his high-level ministers, including Foreign
Avigdor Lieberman, have said there were no plans to extend it. But many
still believe Netanyahu is likely to extend the freeze in exchange for
agreement by the Palestinians to enter direct negotiations with
Direct talks between the two sides broke down in December 2008
and have yet to be resumed.
Meridor has proposed a compromise position
that would allow some construction to continue.
Dani Dayan, who heads the
Council of Jewish Communities of Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip,
Meridor’s idea to continue building in only limited parts of Judea and
dangerous move that would harm Israel’s negotiating position with the
Palestinians.Jerusalem Post staff contributed to