Yaakov Perry
Photo: Alex Kolomoisky

Haredi enlistment: 'In 6 weeks we will have a historic law'

Equal share of burden committee convenes for first time; 'IDF's needs are our first priority,' chairman says

The Knesset Committee for Promoting Equal Share of the Burden, headed by Science Minister Yaakov Perry (Yesh Atid), convened for the first time Sunday. Representatives of the IDF and the Civil Service Administration attended the meeting and stressed they were prepared to intake haredi enlistees.


At the end of the meeting, Perry said: "In six weeks we will have a historic law – the process is sensitive, but the IDF's needs are our first priority."


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The committee's meeting took place only a few hours before the beginning of Memorial Day, and while leading the meeting, Minister Perry stressed the symbolic importance of the coincidence.


ארכיון. "צרכים גדלים והולכים של הצבא" (צילום: גיל יוחנן)

Draft law expected within weeks (Photo: Gil Yohanan)


He was followed by Brigadier-General Gadi Agmon, head of planning in the IDF's Personnel Directorate, who presented before the committee the up-to-date situation of haredi enlistment.


According to him, the IDF is ready to take in additional haredi forces in light of "the Army's growing needs."


He nonetheless noted that the IDF's working premise was that such a process will take place in gradually, making sure the troops were designated to special positions that damage neither their way of life nor the IDF's social fabric.


Head of the Civil Service Administration, Shar-Gerby Shalom, presented civil service enlistment rates, adding that the number of haredim joining National Service has grown since the end of the Tal Law.


All of those present at the meeting referred to the tight schedule governing their committee's work, forcing them to formulate a law before the budget is put up to vote.


Next week the committee will begin working on the formulation of the law and its articles. As part of this process they will tour IDF bases which already include haredi soldiers.


"All members of government understand the importance of the decision and the duty that comes with it," Perry said, adding "time is closing in on us, but we will keep this committee's workings transparent.


"From the end of the '80s, the government and Knesset have dealt with this ever so complicated issue. Now the time has come for a decision."


Sport and Culture Minister Limor Livnat (Likud) added that the committee's role is formulating an outline for enlisting every citizen in the country "in a balanced and gradual manner that is just and fair and does not incite one public against another."


Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch (Yisrael Beiteinu) said: "We are ready to receive thousands of enlistees. Their contribution will manifest in a diverse number of roles suited for the unique qualities of the group joining the service while taking into account their needs.



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פרסום ראשון: 04.14.13, 21:24
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