Israel's Netanyahu under fire for comparing his plight to settlers

By GNA

Tel Aviv, ACCRA, Dec 21, (dpa/GNA) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was under fire Wednesday after reportedly telling settlers facing eviction that he once had to stay at a hotel after being ousted from his residence.

According to local media, Netanyahu told Israeli residents from the West Bank settlement of Amona that he and his family were forced to sleep at the Sheraton Hotel Jerusalem after he lost the 1999 election and was booted "without warning" from the prime minister's residence.

The settlers, who were meeting with Netanyahu to reach a compromise deal on their impending eviction, were stunned by the comment, the Yediot Ahronot newspaper reported.

Israel's top court ruled in 2014 that Amona, built on land belonging to Palestinians from surrounding West Bank towns, must be vacated.

The Israeli government and the residents agreed Sunday to a deal that would see 24 families peacefully move to adjacent land considered absentee property while the 16 remaining families would move to a nearby settlement.

As part of the agreement, the government on Tuesday asked the high court for a 45-day extension to a December 25 eviction deadline.

GNA

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