Annexation Vote Postponed Until Trump Envoy Leaves

YERUSHALAYIM -

A Knesset vote scheduled for Tuesday on the proposed annexation of the city of Maalei Adumim, located over the Green Line, was postponed at the last minute until Sunday, after Trump administration envoy Jason Greenblatt will have departed the country.

The Ministerial Committee on Legislation decided to hold off on a vote, so as not to cause unnecessary tension with the White House, which has been expressing reservations about Israeli policy in Yehuda and Shomron.

Coalition head David Bitan had reportedly asked for a three-month delay, but encountered opposition from the bill’s sponsors — Bezalel Smotrich (Jewish Home) and Yoav Kisch (Likud).

However, Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett gave the word that he would go along with a shorter delay to avoid any embarrassment during Greenblatt’s visit.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, Greenblatt was scheduled to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, which apparently also figured in the decision to put off the committee vote.

“We will do everything in coordination with the coalition, everything in its [proper] time,” Bennett was quoted as saying on Tuesday by Channel 2 News.