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Netanyahu: Cabinet to approve new Jordan Valley settlement

The cabinet will vote on Sunday to approve legalizing the Jordan Valley unauthorized outpost of Mevo’ot Yericho as a legal settlement, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed at a special Knesset session on Wednesday.

Speaking to the Knesset about his Jordan Valley annexation plan, he mocked criticism that he had not taken such a step in his first 13 years as prime minister.

“Those who ask why we didn’t annex it before don’t understand how it works,” he said. “I have been working for years on softening hearts. It is a gradual process. That is why I told the US over the past few days about my decision.”  

Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein had Joint List head Ayman Odeh forcibly removed from the session after Odeh confronted Netanyahu and put a phone camera directly in front of the prime minister’s face.

“Get out already, I’ve already heard your speeches,” said Edelstein as Odeh resisted being removed. Edelstein called Odeh’s behavior shameful.

Netanyahu criticized Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman and his party’s MKs for not attending the special session in which there was a vote on cameras in polling stations. Netanyahu said the bill could have passed with Liberman’s support and accused him of being afraid.

Liberman tweeted that Netanyahu went to the Knesset “to put on a horror show.” He said that Netanyahu was misleading the public on both the cameras and the Jordan Valley.

“Netanyahu will annex the Jordan Valley after he endorses the Sahara Desert,” Liberman said.

In his speech, Netanyahu also attacked the heads of Blue and White. He said he did not know who was happier about rocket fire from Gaza that forced him to leave the stage at an Ashdod Likud rally on Tuesday night, them or Hamas.

Blue and White’s No. 2 candidate Yair Lapid fiercely attacked Netanyahu in his speech at the Knesset session.

“In six days, we can get rid of him,” he said. “Not an ugly goodbye, a polite one, respectful. We’ll thank him and move on.

“It will be over. After two weeks, everyone will look around and see that life goes on. Children are going to school. Prices are coming down. The extremists and extortionists aren’t controlling our lives. Trump will be friends with the next Prime Minister. Because that’s how it is. It’ll be clear that we can live without him – that it’s better without him.”

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