Men building 311.
(photo credit: Courtesy)
If the Palestinians demand the continuation of the construction freeze in Judea
and Samaria beyond the 10-month moratorium, Israel should insist that the freeze
be reciprocated, Public Diplomacy Minister Yuli Edelstein said on
Edelstein, a Neveh Daniel resident who is the only Likud
minister who lives in the West Bank, intends to tell Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu in Sunday’s Likud ministerial meeting that he should demand a
Palestinian construction freeze in his negotiations with Palestinian Authority
President Mahmoud Abbas that are set to begin in Washington next
“The game needs to be played evenly,” Edelstein said. “I suggest
that if we face an approach saying that we must continue to stop
we would undermine the negotiations, then we should say that the freeze
be imposed on both Israel and the Palestinians.”
Edelstein said that
since no one knows what the outcome of the negotiations will be or where
sides would decide on a border, fair solutions would be for neither side
build, or for both sides to build.
Israeli officials were quoted by The
Associated Press on Monday saying that the government was engaged in
with the United States in search of a “creative” solution that would
least limited construction after the moratorium ends on September
While attention has been devoted to Vice Premier Dan Meridor’s idea
to restart construction only in the settlement blocs, Edelstein’s idea
furnish another possible solution.
Netanyahu’s associates responded that
the press was exaggerating the magnitude of the settlement-freeze issue.
said he was busy preparing for much bigger issues that will be on the
the negotiations begin. “The view of Netanyahu is that future of the
will only be decided in a final-status agreement,” a source close to him
“I don’t think he is too worried about Palestinian building either.”
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