The Cabinet, at its weekly meeting, which was held in the Jordan Valley, approved Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s proposal to establish the community of Mevo’ot Yeriho.
After the meeting, Prime Minister Netanyahu and the ministers visited the monument in memory of those who fell in the Jordan Valley during Israel’s wars.
Following are Prime Minister Netanyahu’s remarks at the start of the meeting:
“We have recently presented three components of national security which are important in ensuring the future of Israel. First, a defensive alliance with the US. Over the weekend, I spoke with my friend President Trump. We agreed to advance a historic defensive alliance between the US and Israel at our upcoming meeting at the UN General Assembly. This is historic because it adds a powerful component of deterrence against our enemies, alongside maintaining the ability to act, and freedom of action, of our forces. On this we will always insist and it will always be in this defensive agreement just as it has entered into the other defensive agreements. This is a main component for coming generations to ensure our future.
The second component – Israeli sovereignty over the Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea. I proclaimed this a few days ago. We will apply this sovereignty immediately upon the formation of the next government, in the next Knesset.
I am proud to convene this special Cabinet meeting, in the Jordan Valley. This is not only the eastern gate of the State of Israel; it is a defensive wall from the east because the Jordan Valley, together with the areas that control it, which will be part of the State of Israel, ensure that the IDF will be here forever. Instead of having a state that is only a few kilometers wide, this will be a state with strategic depth and strategic height.
Today the Cabinet will decide to start the process of establishing the community of Mevo’ot Yeriho in the Jordan Valley. The final approval, of course, will be given upon the formation of the next government. Today I have appointed a working team led by the director general of my ministry, Ronen Peretz, to formulate an outline for applying the sovereignty to the Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea.
The third component is applying Israeli sovereignty over all of the communities in Judea and Samaria, both those in blocs, including the area of the blocs, and also those outside the blocs, as well as additional areas that are vital for our security and for ensuring our heritage. These things will come up in the plan of the century; it will come very fast after the elections.
I also have a personal link to this place here; we all have a historic link. The Sartaba fortress, which was established right next to us, was built by King Alexander Yannai. It was the place where they relayed the beacons from the Golan Heights to Jerusalem and back. One hundred years ago, my teacher Zeev Jabotinsky was here. He was a commander and an officer in the Jewish Legion that operated here in the Jordan Valley. Many of us fought here after 1967 and remember the ambushes and the activity on both sides of the Jordan. The best of our friends and fighters fell here – they are here; their names are engraved on the monument that we will soon visit.
Today we witness the extraordinary growth of the communities, the advanced agriculture and important industry. It is important that we ensure the future of the Jordan Valley as part of the State of Israel. Therefore, in addition to applying our sovereignty, I will submit an extensive plan to develop infrastructures in the Jordan Valley, the communities, and the transportation, which I believe will lead to unprecedented flourishing. This is what we will submit today to ensure the future of the State of Israel and the future of the Jordan Valley.”
Attached photo credit: Haim Zach (GPO)