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19th Knesset opens summer session

Knesset is to enter summer session Monday; most pressing issues on agenda are equal share of burden, State budget, peace process with Palestinians

The 19th Knesset will open its summer session Monday, and is expected to focus on the budget, haredi draft and peace talks with the Palestinians.


Since the formation of Israel's new government, barring a number of special sessions convened at the request of opposition parties, the Knesset has been out on recess. 


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First and foremost, the Knesset must vote on the State's budget, which includes critical budget cuts, the full extent of which has yet to be revealed.


ממשלת נתניהו. כיצד תצלח את האתגרים בכנסת? (צילום: אבי אוחיון לע"מ)


The new government, formed by parties that promised to assist the lower and middle classes, will be forced on the one hand to present a realistic budget, but on the other, to mitigate as much as possible the damage exerted by such a budget on the aforementioned classes.


In addition, the Knesset is expected to authorize the new outline for an equal share of the burden. A burning issue, in regards to which many promises were made during the elections.


The outline formulated in the stead of the Tal Law, the majority of which was agreed on during coalition negotiations, is intended to solve the issues of haredi enlistment into the IDF.


Despite the fact that the haredi factions are out of the government and sitting in the opposition, this is not expected to pass quietly; especially in light of promises by leading haredi rabbis to call a "rebellion", as part of which haredim are expected to refuse to appear at enlistment centers.


An additional controversial issues on the Knesset's agenda is the peace process, which could potentially threaten the coalition's stability – accentuating coalition parties' ideological difference.


While Habayit Hayehudi and Yisrael Beiteinu MKs oppose a freeze in settlement construction and generally have little to no faith in the two-state solution, the Hatnua, headed by Tzipi Livni, and Yesh Atid, headed by Yair Lapid, conditioned their joining the government on the reigniting of diplomatic negotiations with the Palestinians. 


In addition to the record number of private and governmental legislative proposals – already number in the hundreds, even before the summer session's beginning – the Habayit Hayehudi intends to tackle the issues of religion and state, working to loosen regulations over conversion processes and civil marriages.


Livni, who heads the Ministerial Committee on Legislative Affairs, has already announced she would work to promote political transparency and cancel secret ballots within the committee, which promises a very stormy Knesset session indeed.



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פרסום ראשון: 04.22.13, 01:07
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