Politicians to fight freeze at schools

Right-wingers to visit settlements on 1st day of studies.

Tractor in settlement 311 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file[)
Tractor in settlement 311
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file[)
In a country where politicians make statements whenever they decide where to plant trees on Tu Bishvat and light candles on Hanukka, a new sacred date has now become political fodder: the first day of school.
September 1 will coincide with a White House dinner marking the long-awaited beginning of direct diplomatic negotiations between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas under the auspices of US President Barack Obama.
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Politicians on the Right intend to use the day to send a message to Netanyahu that the construction moratorium in Judea and Samaria must end as scheduled on September 26 and to Obama that continuing the freeze would harm West Bank children.
At the request of the Knesset’s Land of Israel caucus, ministers and top MKs will spend the day visiting schools in the West Bank.
Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin and coalition chairman Ze’ev Elkin, who chairs the caucus, will visit schools in Efrat in Gush Etzion. Elkin will also go to a school in Tekoa.
Science and Technology Minister Daniel Herschkowitz (Habayit Hayehudi) will visit another Gush Etzion school and children of Gush Katif evacuees in Nitzan.
Vice Premier Moshe Ya’alon (Likud) is expected to tour schools in the Samaria Regional Council, Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein will visit a school in the Samarian community of Yakir, Culture and Sports Minister Limor Livnat (Likud) will be in Ma’aleh Adumim, and Minister-without- Portfolio Yossi Peled (Likud) in Alfei Menashe.
Deputy Minister for Youth Gila Gamliel (Likud) will be in Psagot and Shas MK Haim Amsalem will be not far away, in Kochav Ya’acov.
Asked whether the visits of the ministers to the settlements while he is in Washington would bother the prime minister, a source close to Netanyahu said, “The ministers have the right to express their views, especially in this case, when they are not different from those of the prime minister.”
On the Left side of the map, Minorities Affairs Minister Avishay Braverman will visit two Arab schools and Industry, Trade, and Labor Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer will go to trade schools in Tel Aviv and Ramat Efal.
Other ministers are devoting the school day to personal visits, not political ones. Tourism Minister Stas Meseznikov and Environment Minister Gilad Erdan will be accompanying their children to first grade in Rishon Lezion and Tel Aviv, respectively.
Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz will be visiting the Kfar Saba school that he attended as a child, which expelled the future minister for poor behavior.