(June 17, 2019 / Israel Hayom) A special Cabinet meeting was held in the Golan Heights on Sunday to lay the cornerstone of Trump Heights, a new Israeli community named after U.S. President Donald Trump.
The groundwork on Trump Heights began a few days ago, and the sign marking the entrance to the community was unveiled on Saturday.
U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman took part in the meeting.
In a gesture of appreciation for Trump’s official recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights in March, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced shortly afterwards that Israel would name a new Golan Heights community after Trump.
As soon as Netanyahu made the plan public, the Golan Regional Council was flooded with requests for information about the new community. Over the past few weeks, the council has received more requests following the publication of the community’s exact location, which lies in the northern Golan Heights.
“Hundreds of people have reached out, many of them Jews from Canada and the U.S. who are saying they want to make aliyah and live in ‘Trump City,’ ” said head of the Golan Regional Council Haim Rokach.
“There is an awakening of interest in all the communities in the Golan, not just the new one,” said Rokach, “but the unbelievable flood started with the announcement. We are referring some of the applicants to other communities.”
Last month, Israel Hayom reported that a group of potential new residents of Trump Heights was already making plans to move to the new community. The group includes 24 families and young couples ages 21 to 42. The garin, as such groups are known in Hebrew, has changed its named from “Garin Golan” to “Garin Haggai,” after Staff Sgt. Haggai Ben-Ari, a Golan resident who was killed in Israel’s “Operation Protective Edge” in 2014.
“It was important to us to receive permission from the family, as well as Haggai’s widow, first,” said Sagi Hadashi, 29, the founder of the garin, who currently lives in Ramat Magshimim.
“She was moved, and wished us luck and gave us her blessing, and since then that’s been the name of our group,” said Hadashi.
This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.