Full Text Israel Political Brief May 15, 2015: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks at first meeting of the 34th Government

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s remarks at first meeting of the 34th Government

Source: PMO, 5-15-15

We will work with determination, responsibility and vigor in the face of attempts to test our borders and our security. We will continue to promote a diplomatic settlement while upholding the vital interests and security of the citizens of Israel.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

 Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Copyright: GPO/Avi Ohayon

(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Following are Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks at the start of the first meeting of the 34th Governmentearlier today (Friday, 15 May 2015):

“Despite all the ups-and-downs we had to go through to reach this moment, I am still moved by the position and I am certain that you are too. From this moment on we must leave disagreements outside this room and focus on good work for the citizens of Israel – all citizens of Israel.

We will work with determination, responsibility and vigor in the face of all attempts to test our borders and our security from both near and far. Israel’s enemies must know that any threated directed at us has red lines. This has been our policy under previous governments and will be under the current government as well.

We will continue to promote a diplomatic settlement while upholding the vital interests and security of the citizens of Israel. At the same time and perhaps in assistance, we will try to realize the opportunity of regional developments and new possibilities of action with the moderate and responsible countries around us.

We will work to improve social welfare with emphasis on lowering the cost of living in general and housing costs in particular. We will work to continue to reduce the gaps in Israeli society. We will continue to link the Negev and the Galilee with the center and to strengthen employment there and throughout the country. We are attentive to the cry of immigrants from Ethiopia and their families and next week we will form a special ministerial committee, under my chairmanship, to deal with this problem. We are obligated to work for the good of all Israeli citizens and we will do everything we can to justify the confidence the nation has vested in us.

Now the time has come to roll up our sleeves and get to work. May our efforts be successful.”

The 34th Government of Israel

(Knesset website)

Benjamin Netanyahu – Prime Minister, Minister of Health, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Communications, Minister of Regional Cooperation
Silvan Shalom – Vice Prime Minister, Minister of Internal Affairs

Ofir Akunis – Minister
Uri Yehuda Ariel – Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development
David Azoulay – Minister of Religious Services
Ze’ev Binyamin Begin – Minister
Naftali Bennett – Minister of Education, Minister of Diaspora Affairs
Danny Danon – Minister of Science, Technology, and Space
Aryeh Machluf Deri – Minister of the Economy, Minister of the Development of the Negev and Galil
Zeev Elkin – Minister of Immigration and Absorption
Avi Gabai – Minister of Environmental Protection
Yoav Galant – Minister of Construction
Gila Gamliel – Minister for Senior Citizens
Moshe Kahlon – Minister of Finance
Haim Katz – Minister of Welfare and Social Services
Yisrael Katz – Minister of Transportation and Road Safety, Minister of Intelligence and Atomic Energy
Yariv Levin – Minister of Tourism, Minister of Internal Security
Miri Regev – Minister of Culture and Sport
Ayelet Shaked – Minister of Justice
Yuval Steinitz – Minister of National Infrastructure, Energy, and Water
Moshe Ya’alon – Minister of Defense

Full Text Israel Political Brief May 10, 2015: Last Cabinet meeting of the 33rd Government

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Last Cabinet meeting of the 33rd Government

Source: MFA, 10 May 2015

In the over two years of this government’s existence, since its first meeting, the region around us has been roiling and stormy. And despite the many attempts to challenge us on our borders, we rebuffed all of these attempts.

Israel Cabinet meeting

Israel Cabinet meeting
Copyright: PMO webcast
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today (Sunday, 10 May 2015), made the following remarks at the start of the Cabinet meeting:

“Today we are holding the last Cabinet meeting of the 33rd Government and we are preparing for the first meeting of the new government. I always regard the task of leading the country as being entrusted with a valuable asset – the country – and my responsibility as Prime Minister, and ours as a government, is to return to the public a more secure, prosperous and developed country.

As I summarize the activity of the 33rd government, I can certainly say that despite the difficulties, and there were many, we advanced – during these years – the State of Israel on three main axes. In the over two years of this government’s existence, since its first meeting, the region around us has been roiling and stormy. And despite the many attempts to challenge us on our borders, we rebuffed all of these attempts bar none: From Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, through Iran’s attempts to develop a new front against us on the Golan Heights, to the unceasing efforts to bring advanced weaponry from Syria to Lebanon, and including Hamas’s efforts to perpetrate strategic attacks against us in the south. In Operation Protective Edge, we hit Hamas as hard as it has ever been struck since its founding.

Above all, we have acted unceasingly against Iran’s attempts to arm itself with nuclear weapons. This effort is at its peak. We will not relent. We will continue to maintain Israel’s right to defend itself under any conditions and in any situation.

In the diplomatic sphere, we made another effort to move forward on an agreement with the Palestinians, but once again when there was a need to make tough decisions; Abu Mazen decided to abandon the negotiations. He appealed unilaterally, and in contravention of all the agreements, to the international arena. He abandoned the negotiations and entered into an alliance with Hamas.

In the diplomatic arena, we started to develop new markets for the Israeli economy – in both the diplomatic and the economic arenas – vis-à-vis the giant economies of Asia: India, China and Japan. We joined the Latin American Pacific Alliance as an observer.

We are developing a new industry that is essential to the future of humanity – cybersecurity. This is developing very quickly and dramatically. We are devoting many resources to it, including a special IDF unit and my instructions are to not only develop this ability for the security of the State of Israel, but to integrate it with Be’er Sheva and the Negev, with our academic ability and with industrial development for Israeli and foreign companies. This is happening before our eyes and is changing the face of the Negev and – in effect – the face of the country. It will turn – it is already turning – Be’er Sheva into a global cyber capital.

We raised the minimum wage again. Unemployment continues to be low. Israel’s credit rating is stable, which is no small feat given the economic upheavals that are continuing to rock the world. Additionally, we have continued the accelerated link between the Negev and the Galilee and the center of the country. In the past six years, we laid twice as much railroad track as in the previous six years. We did likewise with highways and interchanges and we are still busy.

We completely blocked illegal migration across our borders, something that no other country in the western world has succeeded in doing. The fence that we built has completely proven itself. We added to this legislative and enforcement measures, as well as others, and in this context I note the opposite trend that is now taking place in Western Europe. As Europe notes an increase of hundreds of percent in the influx of illegal migrants, thousands of illegal migrants are leaving Israel per annum. This is a very important achievement for assuring Israel’s image and character as a Jewish and democratic state.

There is no doubt that much work is yet before us and I promise to do everything so that the next government continues to do it and will even add many more important actions in various areas for the security and welfare of Israel’s citizens.

I would like to thank the members of the outgoing government once again and may we continue to work on behalf of the State of Israel in order to build its security, assure its prosperity and – of course – continue its development.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief August 31, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting about ending the Gaza War

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 8-31-14

יום ראשון ה’ אלול תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting this morning (Sunday, 31 August 2014):

“First, I would like to commend our host, Hof Ashkelon Regional Council Chairman Yair Farjun and the mayors and regional council chairmen, our friends from the south. It was your leadership and patience that gave us much strength to lead this campaign with responsibility, sagacity and great determination, as well as with considerable vigor, in order to restore security to Israel’s citizens. This was, and remains, our supreme concern.

Since the establishment of the State of Israel, our hand has been extended in peace to those of our neighbors who want peace, and we have always fought vigorously, and with strength, against those who wish to destroy us, while building up our state, our cities and our communities – this is what we have done this time as well. We struck Hamas very hard. The IDF and the ISA killed almost 1,000 terrorists, struck at the heads of the organizations, and struck at their network of tunnels and their terrorist high-rises. We foiled their rocket attacks, and their aggression from land, sea and air. We hit their command centers and delivered blows that Hamas has not experienced since it was founded. At the same time, Hamas withdrew from all of its demands for a ceasefire, with neither time constraints nor other conditions.

I hope that the quiet that has been restored will last for a long time. But we are ready for any scenario both in this sector and in others including – of course – the Golan Heights. We will continue in keeping with our Zionist heritage, to develop our communities and our cities. I use the word develop, not just rebuild, because we have already started to do that.

We will make three decisions. Our first decision will be to assist – with a NIS 1.5 billion five-year plan – Sderot and the communities in the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip. The intention is not only to rehabilitate agriculture and repair damage which has been done but also to assist industrial, economic and agricultural development, and of course the construction of additional security infrastructures. This is the first commitment and it will be realized today.

The second thing is that this month we will submit a similar package for the development of the cities and communities of the south. We are committed to them, we have always been committed to them. In recent years there has been accelerated development in the south; we want to strengthen it. The Zionist answer to those who seek our lives is not only to rebuff them and overcome them in any campaign but also to develop our state, in this case the communities in the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip and in the south, and to develop the Negev as a whole.

The third thing that we will do today is to fill in the gaps. We will start to fill in the gaps that have been created in security. This reflects our understanding about the order of priorities in security is first and foremost. We have done very great things here but this requires us to make a redoubled effort to allow the IDF, ISA and the security arms to continue to efficiently protect the State of Israel.

In the end, we share Education Minister Shai Piron’s view regarding tomorrow’s opening of the school year as scheduled throughout the country. I know that Israel’s children, two million Israeli children and their families, who will be going to kindergarten and school tomorrow, have endured a summer that was not simple, and I know that there is also great excitement and anticipation ahead of the opening of the school year. On behalf of the ministers, I would like to wish all of the children, especially those entering first grade, that they should all have a good, successful and safe year.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief August 27, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu sums up Operation Protective Edge

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu sums up Operation Protective Edge

Source: MFA, 8-27-14

MFASummaryNew

There is a realignment of forces in the Middle East based on the common concern with the dangers posed by radical Islamic terrorists. I’d like to see if we can translate this understanding of our common challenges into cooperation and the achievement of peace between Israel and our Palestinian neighbors.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Copyright: GPO/Haim Zach

(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this evening (Wednesday, 27 August 2014), at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, issued the following statement:

Upon the establishment of the ceasefire, I can say that there is a major military achievement here, as well as a major diplomatic achievement for the State of Israel. Hamas was hit hard and it did not receive even a single one of the conditions that it set for a ceasefire, not even one. As Prime Minister of Israel, I hold the supreme responsibility for the security of Israel’s citizens and this is what guided my colleagues – Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon and IDF Chief-of-Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz – and I during each stage of Operation Protective Edge. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the cooperation and the joint work for the security of Israel’s citizens.

From the first moment we set a clear goal: The goal was to strike hard at Hamas and the terrorist organizations and in so doing bring prolonged quiet to all Israeli citizens. I can say that Hamas was indeed hit very hard. First of all, we destroyed the network of attack tunnels that it built over the years. I would like to make it clear that we introduced the ground force for this goal. When the mission was completed, when the IDF reported to us that this mission had been completed, we pulled the force back in order to deny Hamas the possibility of killing our soldiers or abducting them, goals that it very much aspired to.

We continued to attack from the air. Approximately 1,000 terrorists were killed, including senior terrorists, very senior terrorists from among its top command. We destroyed thousands of rockets, rocket launchers, rocket production facilities and other weapons, arsenals, command and control positions, hundreds of command positions, hundreds. We also foiled, of course, attempts by Hamas to attack us by land, sea and air. Above all, thanks to Iron Dome, we foiled hundreds of attempts by Hamas to kill very many Israeli civilians. This was achieved, inter alia, thanks to a decision I made as Prime Minister, in my previous term, to equip the State of Israel with thousands of interceptors which, of course, blocked the murderous aerial assault by Hamas and the other terrorist organizations.

The blow that Hamas has now taken is unprecedented since it was founded, a very hard blow. I must say that it also took a diplomatic hit. See, Hamas set conditions at the outset for a ceasefire. We accepted the Egyptian initiative for a ceasefire, already in the first days, unconditionally and without time constraints whereas Hamas set conditions. It demanded a seaport – it did not get one. It demanded an airport, it did not get one. It demanded the release of the Shalit prisoners, those who were released in the Shalit deal whom we returned to prison following the murder of the three youths, it did not get this. It demanded Qatari mediation, it did not get it. It demanded Turkish mediation, it did not get it. It did not receive any condition. It demanded further conditions. It demanded the rehabilitation of the institutions that we dissolved in Judea and Samaria, it did not get this. It demanded salaries and money from us, it didn’t get them. It did not receive any of the conditions that it set.

We agreed at the outset to one thing – to carry out the humanitarian rehabilitation of the Gaza Strip, with supervisory mechanisms and oversight abilities in our hands. This is in order to prevent the entry of weapons or materials that could be used to produce weapons. We have always agreed to this but we did not agree to accept any of Hamas’s conditions and the fact is that this ceasefire was achieved without the conditions that it set.

Moreover, I think that Hamas is also isolated diplomatically. We received international legitimacy from the global community. First of all, we received 50 days for very strong action against the terrorist organizations. This was substantial. I think that we also instilled in the international community the fact that Hamas, ISIS and Al Qaida and other extremist Islamic terrorist organizations are members of the same family. We also instilled the understanding that the long-term goal is the demilitarization of Hamas and the terrorist organizations, the demilitarization of the Gaza Strip.

All of these are important achievements alongside the realignment of regional forces in the Middle East. The regional change of moderate forces in the Middle East is creating a possible diplomatic horizon for the State of Israel. I think that it contains within it new possibilities for our country. We will certainly try to advance these possibilities in a responsible and prudent manner as we have done up until now.

Will we achieve our goal for prolonged calm? I think it is still too early to say but I can say that the harsh blow that Hamas and the terrorist organizations have taken, as well as our ability, via border controls, to prevent their rearming increase the chances that this goal will be achieved.

I can say that Hamas was surprised by two major things. One, in recent days it was surprised by the strength of our response to the violation of the most recent ceasefire. It thought that we would give in in the end to its conditions – and we did not give in. It thought that it could wear us down. You remember that I told it that it would not wear us down but would instead be hit very hard. I would like to take this opportunity to say that if it resumes firing, we will not tolerate sporadic firing at any part of the State of Israel and how we have responded up until now – we will respond with even greater strength. We are prepared for any possibility.

The second thing that surprised Hamas, Israeli citizens, is your splendid unity. I must say that it simply did not correctly appreciate the unity and strength of the people, and it is a splendid unity. It is the unity of civilian volunteers who helped the heroic IDF soldiers by sending packages, going to every point in person, of the rescue and voluntary organizations such as Magen David Adom and the other organizations, of the kibbutz movement that hosted residents of the south, of the local council heads who also volunteered to do this, and of ordinary citizens who went from place to place including hospitals to help our wounded heroic soldiers.

Our marvelous soldiers – during our visit to an air force base today, the Defense Minister, the Chief-of-Staff and I, I told air force personnel – air and ground crews – what I say to all IDF soldiers: The entire nation owes you its deep gratitude. Your stepping up, your heroism and your dedication, all of these were decisive in the campaign and made major contributions to our present diplomatic and military achievements.

One soldier told me, on one of my visits to the south, would that this unity which gives us so much strength as we go to fight the enemy, would that this unity could continue even after the fighting is over. And I say would that it could, amen, because this is a basic part of our national resilience.

And on behalf of all of you, on behalf of this unity, I would like to send my best wishes for a quick and complete recovery to our wounded soldiers. I visited them, not all of them, but as many as I could, and I was impressed by their strength of spirit. I was impressed by the public’s and their families’ great love for them. Everyone of them is dear to me just as every one of our fallen soldiers is dear to me. And their families, I know their loss and the depth of their pain and sorrow, to the families this evening I say the words that we read a few weeks ago in the haftarah  [from the prophet Isaiah (40:1)], ‘Comfort you, comfort you, My people.’ And comfort may be taken in the strong and united nation that stands here on it land, the Land of Israel, and which is determined to defend our state, the State of Israel, with your support, with your splendid unity. We acted just as we promised all through the operation – with level-headedness and responsibility, with foresight broad enough to ensure your security, citizens of Israel.

Following is Prime Minister Netanyahu’s response, in English, to a question from the press:

Question: “If you could just elaborate on the diplomatic horizon for peace that you have mentioned earlier and within that vision, there the potential for the resumption of peace talks?”

Prime Minister Netanyahu: “I think that there is a realignment of forces in the Middle East. Everybody can see that. The realignment is based on the common concern with the dangers posed by radical Islamic terrorists who are sweeping the region with a ring of fire. And many understand that this is a danger to them. As we understand, it’s a danger to us. And many certainly begin to view Israel less than the full, or an enemy than a potential ally in this common battle.

What I’d like to explore is to see if we can translate this understanding of our common challenges into cooperation in common opportunities, and yes including the pursuit and development and achievement of a peace between Israel and our Palestinian neighbors. This obviously cannot happen with the likes of Hamas, who are committed to our destruction. Everybody says you make peace with an enemy. That’s true. But you make peace only with an enemy who decides to go to peace. That’s the most important and fundamental distinction. An enemy who wants to destroy you is not a candidate for peace. An enemy who says I want to put down, I want to end the hostilities, I want to take a new beginning, make a new start, give a new future for our children and our grandchildren, well that’s somebody that we can make peace with. And I hope that we’ll achieve this.”

PM Netanyahu, DM Yaalon and IDF Chief of Staff Gantz at press conference
  PM Netanyahu, DM Yaalon and IDF Chief of Staff Gantz at press conference
  Copyright: GPO/Haim Zach

Excerpt from statement by Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon:

“Hamas and the other terrorist organizations were dealt a heavy blow during the last 50 days. More than a thousand terrorists were killed, including senior members of the military wing. Terrorist infrastructures were destroyed. We attacked and destroyed weapons, launchers, rockets, homes of commanders, and command and control centers. We struck at the terrorists capabilities, including terrorist tunnels prepared over the course of years. We set Hamas and other terrorist organizations back many years.

Gaza does not look like it looked on the eve of the operation, and it is no surprise that the discourse in Gaza, and within Hamas, is one of anger and frustration. We are talking about a at least ten years of restoration and rehabilitation. When the dust clears over the Gaza Strip, Hamas leaders will have to answer quite a few tough questions following the hard, unprecedented blow inflicted upon them by Israel.

I would like to emphasize, citizens of Israel – do not be impressed by the bragging of Hamas leaders, voiced just after leaving their underground bunkers, their hiding places within civilian structures – hospitals, schools and clinics – surrounded by civilians – women and children – whom they used as human shields.”

Israel Brief August 20, 2014: Hamas admits kidnapping Israeli teens

ISRAEL BRIEF

ISRAEL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Hamas admits kidnapping Israeli teens

 Source: JTA, 8-20-14

Hamas admits kidnapping Israeli teens

A senior Hamas official acknowledged that the Hamas military wing was behind the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers in June…READ MORE

Full Text Israel Political Brief August 17, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting Israel Not Deterred by Hamas’ Threats Will Fight Back Strikes

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting

Source: MFA, 8-17-14

MFASummaryNew

If Hamas thinks that it can cover up its military loss with a diplomatic achievement, it is mistaken. If Hamas thinks that continued sporadic firing will cause us to make concessions, it is mistaken. If Hamas thinks that we cannot stand up to it over time, it is mistaken.

PM Benjamin Netanyahu
  PM Benjamin Netanyahu

Copyright: GPO/Avi Ohayon

(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today (Sunday, 17 August 2014), made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“We are in the midst of a combined military and diplomatic campaign. From the first day, the Israeli delegation to Cairo has worked under clear instructions: Insist on the security needs of the State of Israel. Only if there is a clear response to our security needs will we agree to reach understandings. In the past month Hamas has taken a severe military blow. We destroyed its network of tunnels that it took years to dig. We intercepted the rockets that it had massed in order to carry out thousands of deadly strikes against the Israeli home front. And we foiled the terrorist attacks that it tried to perpetrate against Israeli civilians – by land, sea and air.

If Hamas thinks that it can cover up its military loss with a diplomatic achievement, it is mistaken. If Hamas thinks that continued sporadic firing will cause us to make concessions, it is mistaken. As long as quiet is not restored, Hamas will continue to take very harsh blows. If Hamas thinks that we cannot stand up to it over time, it is mistaken.

In the stormy and unstable Middle East in which we live, it is not enough that there be more strength, determination and patience are also necessary. Hamas knows that we are very strong but maybe it thinks that we do not have enough determination and patience, and here it is making a big mistake.

We are a strong and determined people. We have seen this in the amazing revelations of strength and resilience in the past weeks on the part of both our soldiers and our civilians. We will continue to be steadfast and united until we achieve the goals of the campaign – the restoration of quiet and security for all Israelis.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu, Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon and National Security Council Chairman Yossi Cohen briefed ministers on ongoing developments in Operation Protective Edge and the contacts taking place in Cairo on a diplomatic settlement.

Full Text Israel Political Brief June 29, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting on Radical Islamic Movements in Israel, Rocket Attacks from Gaza and Search for three Kidnapped Teens

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 6-29-14
יום ראשון א’ תמוז תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Over there weekend there was a demonstration in Umm Al-Fahm in which infuriating calls and support for abducting IDF soldiers were heard. Most Israeli Arabs do not take this view and I call on their leaders to be courageous and strongly condemn such calls. As Israelis we cannot countenance such outrageous remarks that call for abducting Israeli soldiers. IDF soldiers protect all of us. We cannot accept infuriating calls to abduct IDF soldiers.

In many cases, those behind such calls and demonstrations are from the northern branch of the Islamic Movement. It constantly preaches against the State of Israel and its people publicly identify with terrorist organizations such as Hamas. Therefore, I directed the relevant authorities to consider declaring the northern branch of the Islamic Movement an illegal organization. This would give the security authorities significant tools in the struggle against this movement.

Over the weekend, the IDF attacked multiple targets in response to firing at Israel from the Gaza Strip .
We are ready to expand this operation as per need. I would like to reiterate that from the moment the Palestinian unity government was established with the Hamas terrorist organization, the Palestinian Authority became responsible for preventing firing at our territory from the Gaza Strip.

Over the weekend, the ISA revealed the identities of those responsible for the abduction of our three youths – Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar and Naftali Frankel and we are continuing to do our utmost to bring them home safely.

Immediately after the abduction, we said that Hamas was responsible. I think that it is now clear to everyone what we based ourselves. Abu Mazen says that he opposes abductions; he says that he wants to proceed on the path to peace. If he stands by what he says, there is only one way to advance peace – and that is to tear up his agreement with Hamas.”

 

Full Text Israel Political Brief June 22, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting Updating on the Search for the Three Abducted Teens

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 6-22-14
יום ראשון כ”ד סיון תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Over the weekend I met with the parents of the abducted youths. I promised them that we are doing, and will do, everything to bring the abducted boys home safely. We are in the midst of a continuing and focused effort to – first of all – bring the boys home.  This effort entails a certain friction with the civilian population in Judea and Samaria; we have no intention of deliberately harming anyone but our forces are acting as necessary for self-defense and from time to time there are victims or casualties on the Palestinian side as a result of the self-defense actions of our soldiers.

We are focusing on returning the abductees, on finding the kidnappers and on striking at the organization to which they belong. We have unequivocal proof that this is Hamas. We are sharing this proof and information to this effect with several countries. Soon this information will be made public. I think that at that time Abu Mazen’s remarks in Saudi Arabia will be put to the test in practice. His remarks will be tested not only by actions to return the boys home but by his willingness to dissolve the unity government with Hamas, which abducted the youths and calls for the destruction of Israel.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief June 15, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting Blaming Hamas for Three Kidnapped Teens in the West Bank

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

יום ראשון י”ז סיון תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“This morning I can say what I was unable to say yesterday before the extensive wave of arrests of Hamas members in Judea and Samaria.

Those who perpetrated the abduction of our youths were members of Hamas – the same Hamas that Abu Mazen made a unity government with; this has severe repercussions.

We are currently focusing all of our efforts on bringing the abductees back home. Before coming here, I spoke again with the families, and I embrace and encourage them from here, from the Cabinet table, and I know that I speak for all parts of the nation.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief June 15, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s statement regarding the kidnapping of Israeli teenagers by Hamas

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s statement regarding the kidnapping of Israeli teenagers by Hamas

Source: MFA, 6-15-14

MFASummaryNew
​Israel will act against the kidnappers and their terrorist sponsors and comrades. We will do whatever needs to be done to protect our people, our citizens, our children and our teenagers from the scourge of terrorism.
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this afternoon (Sunday, 15 June 2014), issued the following statement:
“Hamas terrorists carried out Thursday’s kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers. We know that for a fact. These teenagers were kidnapped and the kidnapping was carried out by Hamas members. Hamas denials do not change this fact. And this attack should surprise no one because Hamas makes no secret of its agenda. Hamas is committed to the destruction of Israel and to carrying out terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians – including children.
Instead of abiding by his international obligation to disarm Hamas, President Abbas has chosen to make Hamas his partner. Israel holds the Palestinian Authority and President Abbas responsible for any attacks against Israel that emanate from Palestinian-controlled territory. The Palestinian claim that the Palestinian Authority cannot be held responsible for an attack that took place in an area under Israeli security control is patently absurd.
When an attack takes place in Tel Aviv or in London or in New York – all these places have been attacked by terrorists – the question is not where the attack takes place. The question is where it originated. The kidnappers in this case set out from territory controlled by the Palestinian Authority, and the PA cannot absolve itself of its responsibility.
You remember that Israel warned the international community about the dangers of endorsing the Fatah-Hamas unity pact. I believe that the dangers of that pact now should be abundantly clear to all. We have seen since the signing of that pact an increase in terrorist activity emanating from the West Bank. We have seen Hamas strengthen its presence there, and this increases the likelihood that Hamas will take control of the Palestinian Authority, precisely as it did in Gaza. This will not advance peace; it will advance terror.
Israel will act in all ways under its province, in all ways under our control, to bring home the three kidnapped teenagers. Israel will act against the kidnappers and their terrorist sponsors and comrades. We will do whatever needs to be done to protect our people, our citizens, our children and our teenagers from the scourge of terrorism.
Thank you.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief May 28, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Jerusalem Day Cabinet Meeting at Ammunition Hill

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Jerusalem Day Cabinet Meeting at Ammunition Hill

Source: PMO, 5-28-14
יום רביעי כ”ח אייר תשע”ד

Photo by GPO

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the Cabinet meeting at Ammunition Hill :

“Jerusalem was unified 47 years ago and it will never be redivided. Since that day, Jerusalem has developed; it is prosperous and flourishing. We meet here every year in order to ensure that this prosperity will be even greater, that the construction will be even broader and that it will flourish even more. We are committed to a rebuilt, greater and developing Jerusalem as a historical mandate of the Jewish People. I have heard that there are those who would like to cancel today as a national holiday. I say that this is not just a national holiday; this is a historic, national miracle. The Jewish People will always see to the rebuilt and greater Jerusalem.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief May 18, 2014: PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting on ADL’s Global Survey on Anti-Semitism, Visit to Japan and Pacific Alliance

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 5-18-14
יום ראשון י”ח אייר תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Last week, the Anti-Defamation League issued a global report in which it compared levels of anti-Semitism among adults in various places around the world . It seems that the place with the highest level of anti-Semitism is the Palestinian Authority, where 93% of adults hold anti-Semitic views. This is the result of the Palestinian Authority’s unceasing incitement, which distorts the image of the State of Israel and the Jewish People, as we have known in other places in our past. This finds expression in the fact that they hold parades to commemorate what they call the Nakba. They define the existence and establishment of the State of Israel as a disaster that must be corrected. This also finds expression in the increased activity that the Palestinians are allowing in Judea and Samaria for Hamas, which directly and openly calls for our destruction. Whoever sees the establishment of the State of Israel and its continued existence as a disaster does not want peace.

Last week, I returned from my visit to Japan . The growth of the Israeli economy depends, first and foremost, on expanding our marketing activity abroad and creating new markets. Last year, I visited China  As a result of this visit, we now see economic development and increased economic activity between the two countries. In Japan last week, there was a clear decision to deepen ties and develop economic, technological, scientific and other links between us and Japan.

On Friday, I spoke with the prime Minister-Elect of India There too there is a clear expression of the desire to deepen and develop economic ties with the State of Israel.

Today, we will approve a decision – which has been submitted by the Foreign Minister and which I think is very important – to strengthen economic ties and develop links with the Pacific Alliance .
The Pacific Alliance is a pact between five Latin American countries with a combined GDP of over $3 trillion.

We are making a very concentrated and focused effort to vary our markets, from our previous dependence on the European market, to the growing Asian and Latin American markets, in which Israel needs to take a small market share and bring about growth, employment and social welfare in the State of Israel. This is a strategic and – I think – a very promising effort. It has already begun to show results and will continue to do so. I would like all ministers, each in his or her own field, to join this important effort.

We are also making an effort to lower the cost of living in the State of Israel and today we will approve a joint decision – by myself, the Finance Minister, the Health Minister and the Economy Minister – to lower food prices in various fields. We will simplify the bureaucracy in order to allow for the import of food that does not have sensitive health issues. This will certainly increase competitiveness and lower prices. This is part of the same continuing effort we are making to lower the cost of living in the State of Israel.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief January 26, 2014: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting Including about Iran

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks – Including about Iran – at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 1-26-14
יום ראשון כ”ה שבט תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“The purpose of the visit to Davos was to detail the advantages of the Israeli hi-tech and cyber defense industries to the leading forces in the world, both countries and new non-state forces, such as international organizations that are as strong as countries, even major powers. The good news is that Israel is very much in demand.

The interest in Israel is very great. The desire to operate here is very great. I estimate that in the coming year we will see the results of both this activity and that of our other actions, i.e. the entry of new companies into Israel, especially in the cyber market, and the expansion of their business activities within Israel, which is already happening.

I met there with the largest companies, including Google ,
Yahoo: ,
Cisco, Microsoft and various cyber companies in both individual and group meetings .

It is widely understood that in the information age information must be protected, otherwise there will be chaos, the jungle.  This is becoming a positive component in all new economic developments. The assessment is that Israel, due to our special circumstances could offer various solutions in this area. It is clear that there is a great opportunity and challenge for us here, first of all to ensure a favorable – and not hostile – business climate for these companies, and secondly, to ensure that our education system will be able to deliver the right tools to our boys and girls so that they will be able to continue to develop with the ability to bring results.

I held talks in Davos with representatives from all continents: With US Secretary of State John Kerry, with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi , with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott , with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan. All of them are important countries with markets and opportunities and important diplomatic significance.

Of course, they would all like to see progress in the diplomatic process with the Palestinians. I made it clear that the desire is there and I think they also understand this.

I must say that the main interest was in regard to Iran’s ‘assault of pleasantness.’  Here, perhaps in contrast to what was depicted in the talks with the leaders, there was greater sharpness and greater clarity regarding the contradictory and mendacious messages that came up in Rouhani’s speech . Rouhani said that Iran was against international involvement in Syria, but Iran is the country that is most involved and aids the Assad regime in perpetrating mass slaughters on a daily basis.

He said that he was against the killing of innocents, but several days previously dozens of people were executed in Iran, most of whom, I can assure you, were innocent. He said that they favored free access to technology even as Iran denies its citizens free access to the Internet. He said that he favored the recognition of all countries in the Middle East and refused to answer the pointed questions that were directed to him about recognizing the State of Israel. The regime there calls for our destruction on an almost daily basis. Finally, the most important and most significant thing, Rouhani said that Iran would not dismantle even one centrifuge.

If Iran persists in saying this it means that the permanent agreement, which is the goal of any diplomatic process with Iran, cannot succeed. In effect, Iran is insisting on maintaining its ability to attain [enough] fissionable material for a bomb without any time constraints following the breakthrough. This means that many of the things which we have been saying will come true – are indeed coming true. Of course, there was also an attempt there to break through the sanctions regime. US Secretary of State Kerry told me that the US would act in order to maintain the existing sanctions, which is important, but it is important to see the test of its implementation.

In any case, Iranian President Rouhani’s remark that Iran would not dismantle even one centrifuge, alongside the interview given by the ‘exceedingly moderate’ Foreign Minister Zarif, in which he made it clear that Iran has an ideological agenda that brings it into perpetual conflict with the West and with the US, because it aspires to see a different world, a different world order, and you know what he means, the combination of these two remarks is causing people to understand that the reality vis-à-vis Iran is not rosy. There is a problem here. We know the truth. There is a regime here that, under cover of an assault of smiles, is trying to arm itself with nuclear weapons, to reach the status of a threshold state that could achieve nuclear weapons very quickly, and a country that has not changed its true ideology at all.

There are arguments inside Iran. There is an internal struggle within Iran over domestic reforms, but there is no change, not as of now, neither in the military nuclear program nor in Iran’s aggressive policy throughout the Middle East and in regard to terrorism well beyond the Middle East. Therefore, such a country cannot be allowed to have the ability to produce nuclear weapons. This has been, and remains, our policy. I assure you that whoever we came into contact with there heard matters clearly both from myself and from President Peres.”

Full Text Israel Political Brief December 8, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 12-8-13
יום ראשון ה’ טבת תשע”ד

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Today we welcome the Secretary General of the OECD, our friend Angel Gurria. Angel Gurria played an important role in our entry to the OECD, which I and previous finance minister, Yuval Steinitz, worked very hard to achieve, as well as governments before ours. Membership in this important organization of the world’s leading economies gives us objective criteria by which to compare the Israeli economy and Israeli society to other countries, and to find ways to improve what needs improving. I must say that in this international comparison, as we will soon hear from the OECD Secretary General, Israel is in a pretty good situation: Growth is among the highest in the developed countries, unemployment is among the lowest in the world and Israel is implementing many good things according to other indices as well, including health in which we are ranked very high.

I am also pleased that this report focuses on high-tech. I just sat with the OECD Secy.-Gen. and I told him what we are doing in the cyber field – to turn Be’er Sheva into a global cyber capital, which will enable many investors and companies from the private sector to come to Israel. I call on them to do this, they are doing it without me, but there is no doubt that this will continue and grow as part of the Israeli engine for participating in the global economy.

Alongside all the good things, we also heard about things that we need to improve, including the gaps within the State of Israel, which are wide in comparison to the world’s economies, especially the non-participation of parts of our population – the ultra-orthodox and the Arabs – which must be integrated into the Israeli labor force, and of course other things that need correcting, including in advancing our education system, in carrying out international tests. I recently spoke about this with the Education Minister, how we might continue the trend of improvement and strengthen it so that Israeli children will be equipped with the tools to compete in tomorrow’s world.

I think that all of this is helped by these reports. They are very interesting and compare us to others. We have greatly improved. In the past decade, we have overtaken most of the countries here. We made greater progress than they did and we must ensure that this trend continues in the coming decade according to all the main indicators. On closing the gaps, I would say that there will be more people who will participate and benefit from growth. This is the main thing that I would say that we need to do, but we must ensure that there will be benefits. The allocation of the benefits is also important, but it is possible only if there are benefits. Creating growth is the critical thing that we are committed to.

I would like to comment on one other thing, which is unusually severe in my opinion. I have heard about the threats of physical attacks by extremist elements in Israeli society against Christians, Christian Arabs who want to enlist in the IDF, who want to be part of the State of Israel. Against these people is an extremist group that is threatening them. We will not tolerate this; I will not tolerate this. We will use all of our tools to stop these thugs and we will allow whoever – Christian, Muslim and Druze – wants to link their fate even more to the State of Israel and wants to serve in the IDF to do so. We will protect them.”

Israel Political Brief June 3, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu vows to stop price-tag, racist attacks

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Netanyahu vows to stop price-tag, racist attacks

Source: Jerusalem Post, 6-3-13

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu condemned racism against Israeli Arabs and “hooliganism” against Palestinians at Sunday’s weekly cabinet meeting….READ MORE

Full Text Israel Political Brief March 10, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting — Thanks 32nd Government Cabinet Ministers

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 3-10-13
יום ראשון כ”ח אדר תשע”ג

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this morning made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Apparently, this will be this Cabinet’s last meeting. I would like to thank the ministers for their excellent work over the past four years. These were four years of continuous action, of setting goals and achieving them. I think that with the perspective of time, this Government will be remembered as one of the governments that achieved more than almost any other in the history of the State of Israel. The achievements are many, they are all-embracing. We will take a moment and discuss them during this meeting, but I think that we have led the State of Israel to a situation in which it is more secure, more prosperous, and has made more progress in all the areas in which we have been active. I think that this is our foremost goal; to lead the country to a better situation that the one in which we received it, and there is no doubt that this was done.

We did all of this while the world around us was changing for the worse. The regional situation is changing for the worse. The global economy is wobbly and unstable, and the State of Israel, in this sense, is in a better situation. We still face very great challenges; of course, in lowering the cost of living and housing, in equality in sharing the burden, and above all, the major security challenges, there are no other words, the major security challenges that are piling up around us. We will, of course, need to deal with these in the next government.

I expect that the ministers in the next government will take your actions as an example, ministers and deputy ministers. Your work will serve as an example for the next government and if we act with the same focus, the same cooperation, we will, in the next government, I am sure, be able to overcome the challenges that we face.”

Israel Political Brief March 3, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Cabinet Meeting on Iran & Nuclear Weapons

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 3-3-13

יום ראשון כ”א אדר תשע”ג

Photo by GPO

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today, made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Good morning.

I was briefed over the weekend on the major powers’ talks with Iran on the nuclear issue. The American representative briefed National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror on these talks. My impression from these talks is that the only thing that was achieved was to stall for time during which Iran intends to continue enriching nuclear material for an atomic bomb, and it is indeed continuing toward this goal.

I must say that at this time our enemies are uniting in order to bring about not only atomic weapons that could be used against us, but other deadly weapons that are piling up around us. At a time when they are coming together and uniting their efforts, we must come together and unite our forces in order to repel these dangers.

I regret that this is not happening. I will continue my efforts in the coming days to try and unite our forces and bring them together ahead of the major national and international tasks that we face. I hope that I will succeed, I will continue to try.”

Israel Political Brief January 27, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu warns on Iran: Its Holocaust is the demise of Israel

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

Netanyahu warns on Iran: Its Holocaust is the demise of Israel

Source: JTA, 1-27-13

Iran is preparing for another Holocaust — the destruction of Israel — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on International Holocaust Remembrance Day….READ MORE

Full Text Israel Political Brief January 27, 2013: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Cabinet Meeting on International Holocaust Remembrance Day

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Cabinet Meeting

Source: PMO, 1-27-13

יום ראשון ט”ז שבט תשע”ג

Photo by GPO

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, today made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:

“Today, we mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day. I welcome Yad Vashem Council Chairman Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau and the Chairman of the Yad Vashem Board of Directors, Avner Shalev. This day was established at the initiative, and as a result, of systematic action by Silvan Shalom, who was then Foreign Minister, and I welcome the work of Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein, who has struggled for the commemoration of the Holocaust, and who has struggled against the new anti-Semitism that is flooding the world. Anti-Semitism has not disappeared and – to our regret – neither has the desire to destroy a considerable part of the Jewish People and the State of Israel. They exist and they are strong. Holocaust-denial is being spread by one of the world’s major countries, not by a group or by individual countries or by marginal elements, but by Iran which, today, from the UN or any other platform, is the leader of Holocaust-denial while preparing for what they deem to be another Holocaust – the destruction of the state of the Jews. They are not halting their relentless and systematic race to achieve a nuclear weapons capability in order to realize this intention. We do not make light of these threats and we will prevent them. This is our primary mission as a government and as a people.

In the perspective of the almost 75 years that have passed since the Holocaust, what has not changed is the desire to annihilate the Jews. What has changed is the ability of the Jews to defend themselves. This ability finds expression in the state, the military, and the security services and in our willingness to act against those who come to destroy us. This ability is the difference between what was then and what there is today. Nobody will defend the Jews if they are not ready to defend themselves; this is another lesson of the Holocaust. It is impossible to rely on separate and independent action to defend the Jews if the Jews will not defend themselves.

Therefore, the root of the issue today, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, is not what happened, but how we can prevent it from happening again and this depends on the ability and the determination of the state of the Jews to defend itself against those who would destroy it. To this end, we must look around us, at what is happening in Iran and its proxies and at what is happening in other areas, with the deadly weapons in Syria, which is increasingly coming apart. The Middle East is not waiting on the results of the elections and it will not stop during the formation of the government. There are many threats here, among the more difficult that I have pointed out and others, and the reality is developing apace. In the east, north and south, everything is in ferment and we must be prepared. Strong and determined in the face of all possible developments. To this end, I would like to form the broadest and most stable government as possible in order – first of all – to meet the significant security threats that face the State of Israel, and I am convinced of our ability to deal with these threats.”

Israel Political Brief October 28, 2012: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting on the Gaza Rocket Attacks on Southern Israel

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF

ISRAEL POLITICAL BRIEF: ISRAEL NEWS

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting

Photo by GPO

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting today:

“Today, we mark 17 years since the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. I call upon ministers to stand and observe a minute’s silence.

The murder of Yitzhak Rabin was one of the worst crimes of the new age. It certainly besmirches the annals of the state and of Zionism. It will be etched in Jewish history along with other traumatic events, including those from ancient times such as the murder of Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam.

This murder also obliges us to safeguard Israel’s democracy, to defend freedom of speech and to strongly reject all displays of violence. These words will certainly come up today in the remarks that will be made at the two ceremonies that we will go to, both on Mt. Herzl and at the Knesset. I think that as time passes, the deeper significance of this imperative becomes more cogent and it is important that we, as leaders, do not, in any way, allow it to become blurred.

Today we will also decide on completing the protection of residents of the south. Until today, residents of the south in the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip enjoyed protection, full protection up to 4.5 kilometers. The addition of Iron Dome batteries affords protection beyond seven kilometers – but the seam remains. In the intermediate seam, there was protection for educational institutions. Today, we will decide to complete this full protection for all residents of the south, for all structures. Homes and residences. Of course, this will provide security for residents of the south. We are doing this because attacks by rockets and missiles at shorter distances are much greater in the area around the Gaza Strip than at other distances. I think that this is what residents of the south have been hoping for, they have been calling for it for a long time.

I have discussed this with Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter and, of course, with his predecessor, Matan Vilnai, before the latter went to Beijing. He left me with this request as an imperative that we must implement. Defense Minister Ehud Barak also requested this of me. This decision has been preceded by extensive staff work by the various ministries, led by the Prime Minister’s Office and its Director-General. This is, I think, what is necessary. I think that this is one of the most important items that the Cabinet is deciding today for residents of the south. I am certain that it will be approved unanimously.

Thank you.”

%d bloggers like this: