Last Update 21:59
Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Netanyahu seeks cuts to 2014 budget to finance Gaza war

AFP , Sunday 31 Aug 2014
Netanyahu
srael's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu chairs the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, Sunday, Aug. 17, 2014 (Photo: AP)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 809
Share/Bookmark
Views: 809

Israel's cabinet convened on Sunday to debate Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's call for swingeing budget cuts to pay for the 50 day military campaign in Gaza.

Netanyahu, Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon and Finance Minister Yair Lapid are seeking cuts of two percent from every government ministry -- other than defence -- to raise about 2 billion shekels ($561 million, 425 million euros).

According to documents released by the cabinet office ahead of Sunday's weekly meeting the biggest proposed cut is to the education ministry, which is being asked to give up 4.8 billion shekels.

Welfare and social services are being asked for 62.6 million and health spending is to be trimmed by 43 million.

Welfare Minister Meir Cohen protested, saying there was no more fat on his budget to trim.

"From whom will we take? From those who have nothing to put in their children's sandwiches for school?" he said on Israeli army radio.

Netanyahu's own office, which is responsible for the domestic and foreign intelligence agencies, the Atomic Energy Commission and other departments, is to lose 33 million.

The foreign ministry, long bedevilled by dwindling budget allocations and rocked earlier this year by a strike of senior diplomats and a lockout of the foreign minister from his Jerusalem office, needs to trim 11.9 million.

The original 2014 budget was itself an austerity package which Lapid said was essential for the country's economic health.

It was to have cut 3.0 billion shekels from defence spending but after hard lobbying from Yaalon 2.75 billion shekels were reinstated.

Lapid warned at the time that if defence spending were not reined in the axe would fall on health, education and social spending.

Sunday's cabinet session took place in southern Israel, near the Gaza border, in solidarity with Israelis pounded by thousands of rockets and mortar rounds until Tuesday's truce.

"I hope that this quiet will continue but we are prepared, for any scenario," Netanyahu's office quoted him as telling the meeting.

Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.