September 23, 2010 - 12:00am

Rightist Knesset members slammed American President Barack Obama Thursday over his remarks during a speech at the United Nations General Assembly.

Responding to the president's call for an extension of the West Bank settlement freeze, Likud MK Danny Danon said "Obama is invited to turn on CNN Sunday and watch the bulldozers resuming construction in Eretz Yisrael."

"A person who presents the freeze as a condition for peace is completely detached (from reality,) and will apparently not get to be a partner for peace in the Middle East," he said.

Meanwhile, leaders of the Lobby of the Eretz Israel Front in the Knesset, MKs Zeev Elkin and Arieh Eldad, also slammed Obama's call to extend the settlement construction freeze, calling it "inappropriate intervention."

According to lobby members, the American president's statement was an attempt to "forcefully overturn the democratic decision of the citizens of Israel, who voted in favor of strengthening the settlements in Judea and Samaria and against concessions and withdrawal."

On the other side of the political spectrum, Peace Now urged the government to extend the construction freeze by another three months at least, while avoiding a new crisis with the US.
"Diplomatic, national interests must overcride Netanyahu's political commitment to the Likud Central Committee," Peace Now said.

Elsewhere, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who is in New York for the UN General Assembly session, issued a brief statement lauding Obama's words and his commitment to long-lasting peace in the Mideast.


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