Netanyahu inaugurates government with call for sovereignty

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells the Knesset that “it is time” to apply sovereignty to Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.

By Paul Shindman, World Israel News

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday presented his new government in the Knesset and said “it is time” to extend Israeli sovereignty to Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.

“The time has come to apply Israeli law to [settlements] and to write another brilliant chapter in the history of Zionism,” Netanyahu said.  “This step will not push away peace. This step will bring it closer. Because peace can be based only on the truth. And we all know that hundreds of thousands of settlers in Judea and Samaria, our brothers and sisters, will forever stay in their places as part of any permanent peace settlement.”

“The time has come for the both our neighbors the Palestinians and the members of this house to accept this,” Netanyahu said as Arab Knesset members Yousef Jabareen and Samy Abu Shahadeh heckled him, saying the Jewish communities were built on “the occupation of another nation.”

The prime minister also said the government would fight moves by the International Criminal Court to adopt a Palestinian claim that some Israeli housing built on disputed land constitutes a “war crime” and prosecute members of the Israeli military for actions in defensive wars started by the Hamas terror group in Gaza.

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“We will fight against the infuriating attempt” by the court of charging Israel with the “horrible crime” of building kindergartens, Netanyahu said.

“You are afraid of international justice,” heckled Jabareen, a member of the Hadash communist party and a law professor who got his doctorate degree at Georgetown University.

Netanyahu fired back, saying that as a young legislator he too had known of boorish behavior in the house, but he learned that heckling and interrupting the person who had the floor had no effect.

“I can only give you this advice because from my many years and depth of experience, I tell you it does not work,” Netanyahu said.

After reading out the entire list of his cabinet members and their portfolios, Netanyahu told the house that under the unity agreement Benny Gantz would take over as prime minister on November 17, 2021.

“I request, Mr. Speaker and members of the Knesset, the confidence of the Knesset in the national unity government,” Netanyahu concluded.