PM warns against early elections, thanks Trump Administration for its support at UNGA; PM announces plans for resilience package for southern Israel’s residents; Netanyahu to meet with Finance Minister Sunday.
Prime Minister Netanyahu thanked the Trump Administration for again supporting Israel at the United Nations during the General Assembly’s voting of nine anti-Israel resolutions on Friday.
The United States for the first time voted against the UN’s annual anti-Israel resolutions which always include a resolution condemning Israel’s “occupation” of the Golan Heights. The US State Department and US Ambassador Nikki Haley both confirmed ahead of the UN General Assembly on Friday that the United States would no longer abstain to the Golan Heights resolution, voting against it alongside Israel.
During his weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday morning, Netanyahu thanked President Trump and his Administration for their decision to “vote against the traditional resolution condemning us for being on the Golan Heights.” He stated “I would like to thank President Trump and Ambassador Haley on this important and just vote that is completely in keeping with my policy- Israel will always remain on the Golan Heights, and the Golan Heights will always remain in our hands.”
Prime Minister Netanyahu also addressed the current government crisis and call for early elections, warning that given the current security situation, elections would be both “unnecessary and incorrect”. He reported Sunday, “I have spoken with all of the coalition heads. This evening I will meet with Finance Minister Kahlon in an attempt to prevent the government from being toppled. At this sensitive time, vis-à-vis security, it would be both unnecessary and incorrect to go to elections.”
Netanyahu met with MK Naftali Bennett who has demanded to replace recently resigned Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Bennett, like Lieberman, was against the latest ceasefire with Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad. The ceasefire has resulted in protests from southern residents in Israel who have criticized the government’s actions and mishandling of the Gaza situation.
Over 500 rockets were fired at Israel, the majority of projectiles fired over a 24-hour period. The IDF and IAF retaliated, hitting over 150 terror targets. In an elite IDF unit raid in the Gaza Strip last Sunday, an officer was killed. Hamas later claimed the IDF’s mission was to place listening devices in the Strip.
Netanyahu thanked Lt.-Col. M, whose identity will be kept secret from the public for several years. Referring to the officer as a “a hero of Israel, among our best,” he stated “I think that every Israeli citizen needs to be proud of such heroes and such people.”
Netanyahu met with IDF officials and Southern Regional Command officials and local government and political officials from southern Israel. Following the meeting, the Office of the Prime Minister confirmed “a ₪500 million resilience program for the Gaza-adjacent communities for the years 2019-2020” will soon be submitted to the government. The program would work in “strengthening emergency medical infrastructure, informal education, welfare services and security grants to assist in the communities’ ongoing functioning…. subsidies for daycare centers will be provided and augmented agricultural quotas, such as for egg and milk production, will be allotted, and more.”
Photo: Ververidis Vasilis/Shutterstock.com