Cabinet Communique (Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)
At the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday, 29 June 2014):
1. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks:
“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 (<http://www.idfblog.com/2014/06/28/live-updates-gaza-terrorists-fire-rockets-israel/>). 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.
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.”
2. The Cabinet approved a proposal to employ up to 1,500 Jordanian workers in hotels in Eilat. The Jordanian workers are required as a timely and stable solution to the manpower crisis in Eilat hotels, in keeping with occupancy levels. These workers, according to the proposal, would be day workers who return to Jordan at the end of the working day and would be employed in cleaning, dishwashing and room service in the Eilat hotels only. This arrangement would also contribute to the relationship between Israel and Jordan and help Jordan deal with the high rate of unemployment in the south of the country.
According to the decision, an advisory committee will be established, headed by a representative from the Populations and Immigration Administration and with the participation of representatives from the Prime Minister’s Office, the Tourism Ministry, the Economy Ministry, the Foreign Ministry and the Finance Ministry. This committee will make recommendations to the Interior Minister on matters relating to the scope and dates of allocating permits. According to the decision, the quotas agreed will be valid until the end of 2019 or until such time as the unemployment rate in Eilat passes the 7.5% mark according to statistics released by the Economy Ministry. The decision gives authorization to the Interior Minister to allocate 500 permits in the first phase and, in agreement with the Economy Minister and in coordination with the Tourism and Finance Ministers, to allocate additional permits up to a total of 1,500 permits. This procedure will allow the government to investigate the advantages and disadvantages of employing Jordanian workers and the freedom to act in giving incentives to Israeli workers.
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