Shin Bet May Build Shortcut for Netanyahu through Nature Reserve

November 25, 2010 12:45 AM IMEMC News Israel, Miscellaneous, News Report 0
25 Nov
12:45 AM

Shin Bet security service is considering building a private road through a nature reserve that would connect Prime Minister Netanyahu’s house to the Route 2 coastal highway, Haaretz claimed on Wednesday. The Shin Bet is envisaging the possibility to construct a shortcut from Prime Minister’s Jerusalem residence to his Caesarea house, clarifying that, if carried out, the plan would be legal. The move would allow the security service to keep away from having to block residential traffic in Caesarea when Netanyahu arrives and leaves.

Environmental advocates claim the building plan would cause irreversible ecological damage. The Society for the Protection of Nature points out that an alternate route should be identified in order to avoid the damage, even in the event the road is required for security reasons.

Security officials addressed to the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, at the beginning of this week, and requested a response to its proposed plan.

It is not clear whether the shortcut would be accessible for the use of Caesarea’s residents, in Netanyahu absence, or whether it would be for the exclusive use of the Prime Minister and his guests.

The nature reserve is known to be one of the last habitats of its kind in the country. Part of the reserve has been already obstructed by turning its northern border into a large sand bank to mark a barrier between Caesarea and the neighboring Arab village of Jisr al-Zarqa.

Residential development has incorporated over the years most of the sand dunes in the area. Environmental campaigners are afraid that further construction would irrevocably harm the flora and fauna that live in the dunes.

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