The government is set to approve a town called 'Ramat Trump' in the Golan Heights on Sunday, a year after announcing plans to establish the town in appreciation of US President Donald Trump's recognition of Israel's sovereignty over the Golan Heights and the move of the US Embassy to Jerusalem.
In June last year, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who pushed to name a settlement in the area after Trump in appreciation of his recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan, his decision to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem and his "strong support for Israel," unveiled the sign for “Ramat Trump” (Trump Heights) on a plot of synthetic grass near the existing community of Kela Alon.
The announcement in June did not include a specific plan on how to fund the new town or establish it. On Sunday, a more specific plan will be presented to the government, according to Walla! News.
The plan includes a budget of NIS 8 million to cover the necessary processes to develop Ramat Trump, with NIS 3 million going to the Housing Ministry and NIS 5 million to the Settlements Ministry to construct a temporary camp with mobile homes.
The Finance Ministry stated that there don't appear to be any financial objections to the establishment of the settlement, but the settlement will require a budget of NIS 28.5 million, according to Walla!.
The NIS 8 million set to be approved by the government on Sunday is only for initial development in 2020, with further development dependent on a more sizable future budget.
"The initiative to establish a new settlement in the Golan Heights, that will be called by the name of President Donald Trump, expresses an appreciation for his actions for the State of Israel in general and the Golan Heights specifically. There is importance in progressing the decision about establishing the settlement at this moment in order to strengthen the political ties between Israel and the USA," reads the explanation for the proposal set to be placed before the government on Sunday, according to Walla!
In June 2019, after the sign for the town was unveiled, MK Zvi Hauser, of the Blue and White Party who served as cabinet secretary under Netanyahu from 2009 to 2013, called the measure “Isra-bluff.”
“Whoever reads the fine print in this ‘historical decision’ will understand that it is nothing more than a fictitious and non-obligatory resolution (fake policy),” Hauser said. “There is no budget, there is no plan, there is no location for the settlement and there isn’t really any binding decision to execute the project.”
The community, to be a mixed secular-religious settlement which in its first stage is expected to number some 120 families, will be set up in the northern Golan at Beruchim.
Herb Keinon contributed to this report.