Netanyahu Blocks Bill to Force Building in Beit El

YERUSHALAYIM -

A bill written for the express purpose of forcing Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to keep his promise to build new housing in Beit El was vetoed on Wednesday by… Netanyahu.

The prime minister directed that the proposal be removed from the agenda of the Ministerial Committee for Legislation’s next Sunday meeting.

Although Netanyahu reaffirmed a promise to build 300 housing units in the community last month when he met with Beit El Mayor Shai Alon and told him that the units would be approved for the next stage in September.

However, after years of broken promises, the residents of Beit El and their supporters are distrustful. The prime minister publicly pledged to build there five years ago, following the court-ordered demolition of five illegally built houses in Beit El’s Givat Ulpana neighborhood.

Jewish Home party MK Betzlel Smotrich, a sponsor of the bill, branded the veto as “undemocratic” and said that he and co-sponsor MK Yoav Kish (Likud) will bypass the committee and introduce the bill in the Knesset plenum without formal coalition backing.