Regev submits bill to ban talks on Jerusalem, refugees

Initiative is latest bill trying to tie PM's hands in peace talks, requires majority in Knesset to negotiate on status of capital.

Miri Regev (photo credit: Facebook)
Miri Regev
(photo credit: Facebook)
A bill meant to block the government from negotiating Jerusalem’s status and the entry of Palestinian refugees into Israel will be brought to the Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Sunday.
Likud Beytenu MK Miri Regev’s measure is one in a series of recent legislation from the Right and Left that seek to tie the Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s hands when it comes to diplomatic moves.
According to Regev’s proposal, at least 61 MKs would have to pre-approve any negotiations on Jerusalem or the status of Palestinian refugees.
Any talks on those matters that take place without the Knesset’s authorization will not obligate any government body.
“I don’t trust the people running the negotiations or [ Justice Minister] Tzipi Livni [who is in charge of the current talks with the PLO ], the crybaby who hasn’t brought any results,” Regev told Army Radio on Tuesday. “I don’t even know if the prime minister trusts her... She doesn’t decide policy.”
Regev’s bill follows another proposal of hers to annex the Jordan Valley, which was approved for government support by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation last week with backing from all Likud Beytenu ministers, though Livni and Yesh Atid ministers appealed the vote immediately after.
MK Ya’acov Litzman (United Torah Judaism) drafted an initiative similar to Regev’s, one that would prevent the government from negotiating on Jerusalem without two-thirds of the Knesset’s approval.
The Ministerial Committee for Legislation authorized it, but Livni and Yesh Atid ministers appealed the vote. Litzman anyway brought the bill to the plenum in December, and it was voted down, with Likud Beytenu and Bayit Yehudi absenting themselves.
MK Michal Rozin (Meretz) suggested that “Miri Regev propose the bill she really wants, outlawing any peace treaty or diplomatic agreement between Israel and the Palestinians that she didn’t sign herself.
“The prime minister is being run by the most extremist members of his coalition, who make even [Foreign Minister Avigdor] Liberman look like a Geneva Accord supporter, and we are on the way to destruction if we don’t get up and stop him. We cannot let them drag us into the next cycle of violence,” Rozin said.
Despite its criticism of such initiatives from the Right, the Left has also proposed bills to restrict the government’s diplomacy.
On Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation voted down a bill by MK Merav Michaeli (Labor) to forbid any construction over the June 4, 1967, Green Line.
Another initiative rejected by the ministers, nicknamed the “two-state bill” and proposed by MK Hilik Bar (Labor), would forbid any unilateral annexation and specifies that the final status of territory in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip would only be decided in a treaty bringing about a two-state solution.