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Sunday, January 17, 2010

The Jerusalem building freeze

Prime Minister Netanyahu has been making a big deal about not freezing construction in Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem that are across the 1949 armistice line. It's all a lie.

In August, I reported that the Netanyahu government had agreed to a de facto freeze in neighborhoods in Jerusalem that are across the 1949 armistice line. Two weeks ago, Israel announced the construction of some 700 new apartments in those neighborhoods. It turns out that those apartments were approved by the United States and that they are the last apartments we will have constructed in the parts of Jerusalem that are across the 1949 armistice line for quite a while. Bibi has bowed to Obama.
The story behind the recent announcement of 700 new housing units in Jerusalem does not paint a pretty picture for future construction in new Jerusalem neighborhoods. The new units are a result of strong pressure and even threats by coalition partner Shas, a request by Prime Minister Netanyahu to the U.S., one-time permission for a precise amount of housing units, and a coordinated, weak condemnation.

The information comes from an unnamed senior source in the Prime Minister’s Bureau and sources close to Housing Minister Ariel Attias, reports correspondent Haggai Huberman. Attias of Shas reportedly told Netanyahu that his party would no longer be able to tolerate what had become a “construction freeze” in Jerusalem – and that he would make a public statement to this effect if the situation continued.


The PM’s bureau source said that the numbers were determined in coordination with the Obama Administration, after Netanyahu explained that he must find a way to appease the nationalist and Shas camps regarding the freeze in Judea and Samaria.

Two other tenders – 150 units in Pisgat Ze’ev and 130 in Har Homa – are still in limbo, according to Housing Ministry sources, because adding them would mean that Israel exceeds the 700 approved by the United States.

Immediately following the announcement of the tenders, the U.S. government publicized a condemnation of sorts, stating that the US objects to new Israeli construction in eastern Jerusalem and that Jerusalem’s final status must be resolved via bilateral negotiations with the support of the international community.

The PM’s Bureau source said that both the tender announcement and the condemnation were timed to coincide with the Christmas vacation, so that neither would receive much attention.
Disgraceful. Totally and utterly disgraceful. Now that the cat is out of the bag, maybe someone will raise this in the cabinet and in the Likud Central Committee.

For those wondering why - given the de facto freeze - Abu Bluff has not returned to the bargaining table, that's a matter of 'honor.' He won't return to the table unless Israel openly admits it's freezing construction in Jerusalem.


At 6:15 PM, Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

25% of obumblers reign is over...

10 months of a building freeze with bring us two 50% over...

it's a waiting game...

At 8:37 PM, Blogger Ashan said...

Why is Bibi bowing to Emperor Hussein, when he's spiraling into a nosedive at home? Bibi should be out bashing the Dear Leader into a pulp with everyone else. The creep may not last his full term (especially when his treasonous acts filter down to the majority of people who have yet to catch on).

At 11:05 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Israel's agreement to a defacto east Jerusalem freeze is not going to bring Abu Bluff back to the table. And yes its a national disgrace.


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