Jerusalem: Hours after the Israeli Parliament approved new obstacles to a land-for-peace deal with the Palestinians, left-wing activists took some solace in a last-minute decision by right-wing politicians to jettison one part of their plan.

The surprise move came around 3am on Tuesday, local time, when members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition stripped from a bill they were about to enact, language that would have made it easier to exclude Palestinians from the map of Jerusalem.

The decision was tactical, not philosophical, but left-wing activists hoped it would give them a chance to fight another day.

The provision removed from the bill would have allowed the municipal map of Jerusalem to be redrawn without a parliamentary vote on the new boundaries.

That, in turn, would have smoothed the way for a proposal to exclude from the city several densely populated Palestinian neighbourhoods that are outside the security barrier Israel erected to prevent terrorist attacks.

Read the full article by David Halbfinger at the Brisbane Times.

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