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Israel Prepares for Elections on Tuesday

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Posted on: 
16 Sep 2019
Israel Prepares for Elections on Tuesday
Leaders of Israel’s political factions were busy over the weekend, appearing at campaign events, giving interviews to media outlets and otherwise making a last-minute push to convince their supporters to go to the polls on Tuesday amidst fears of historically low turnout. Incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with Army Radio Monday morning saying, among other things, that he is prepared to annex Kiryat Arba and the Jewish areas of Hebron should he be re-elected. The pledge came a day after he presided over a Cabinet meeting symbolically held in the Jordan Valley.

“I said this to Trump, I plan to apply sovereignty on all of the settlements, including in the blocs, and the territory [around it] and all the settlements and the sites that have importance from a security or Israeli heritage perspective,” Netanyahu said during his interview. “I said that no one will be uprooted, I won’t recognize the [Palestinian] right of return and I said that Jerusalem must remain united. All these things were said.” He added, in regards to the much-anticipated “deal of the Century” plan from the Trump Administration that “We are determining Israel’s final borders, so it has strategic depth and heights.”

“We will apply sovereignty in the Jordan Valley and the Northern Dead Sea as soon as the next government is established in the next Knesset,” Netanyahu told his Cabinet ministers on Sunday at the Jordan Valley meeting. “Today I have appointed a working team led by the director-general of my ministry, Ronen Peretz, to formulate an outline for applying sovereignty to the Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea.”

“Over the weekend, I spoke with my friend President Trump,” Netanyahu said. “We agreed to advance a historic defensive alliance between the US and Israel at our upcoming meeting at the UN General Assembly. This is historic because it adds a powerful component of deterrence against our enemies, alongside maintaining the ability to act, and freedom of action, of our forces. On this we will always insist, and it will always be in this defensive agreement just as it has entered into the other defensive agreements.”

“I am proud to convene this special cabinet meeting in the Jordan Valley,” said Netanyahu. “This is not only the eastern gate of the State of Israel; it is a defensive wall from the east because the Jordan Valley, together with the areas that control it – which will be part of the State of Israel – ensure that the IDF will be here forever. Instead of having a state that is only a few kilometers wide, this will be a state with strategic depth and strategic height.” He continued by saying he would be “applying Israeli sovereignty over all of the communities in Judea and Samaria, both in those blocs – including the area of the blocs – and also those outside the blocs, as well as additional areas that are vital for our security and for ensuring our heritage. These things will come up in the plan of the century; it will come very fast after the election.”

The Palestinian Authority, the Organization of the Islamic Conference, various Arab and Moslem governments and Netanyahu’s domestic political opponents all condemned the meeting while leaders of various Right-wing factions noted it but urged their supporters to cast their ballots for them and not switch to Likud.

Here is a video posted by the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the upcoming elections


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