Meretz head furious over Hevron construction

MK Tamar Zandberg blasts Cabinet plan to approve 31 housing units in Hevron. "The settlement in Hevron should be evacuated, not inflated."

Nitsan Keidar ,

Tamar Zandberg
Tamar Zandberg
Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Meretz chairwoman MK Tamar Zandberg is furious at the government's intention to approve on Sunday the construction of 31 housing units in the Hezekiah Quarter in Hevron.

The plan will require a cut of 22 million shekels in the budgets of the government ministries.

"Have you missed the extreme right-wing government? No less than fourteen Pyromaniac government ministries have come together to transfer 21 million shekels to fuel the extremist and destructive settlement in Hevron tomorrow," Zandberg wrote on Twitter on Saturday night. "All this is at the expense of the culture, education, agriculture and social equality of all the citizens of Israel. The settlement in Hevron must be evacuated, not inflated."

She added sarcastically, "It's really moving to see how all the ministers put together a fundraising campaign for the settlement in Hevron: The Minister of Agriculture contributed 1.5 million, the Minister of Science gave a million, and so did the Minister of Environmental Protection, the Minister of Social Equality and the Culture Minister. The Minister of Tourism provided two million and the Education Minister gave three million."

"All this good was done in order to replace a military base with a settlement that can continue to make life miserable for all of us," added MK Zandberg.

The homes expected to be approved on Sunday would be the first new construction in the Jewish quarter of Hevron in 16 years.

After Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu approved the inclusion of the item in the agenda for Sunday’s Cabinet meeting, it appears that the approval is closer than ever. Netanyahu's associates said on Saturday night that "the Prime Minister is in favor of approving the plan and therefore gave a green light to bring it up for a vote in the Cabinet."

Over the last two years, the leaders of the Jewish community of Hevron have tried to advance construction in the Hezekiah quarter. Ministers Naftali Bennett and Aryeh Deri, who assisted in the project, raised the issue in several meetings that were attended by Prime Minister Netanyahu.