PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at the Start of the Weekly Cabinet Meeting
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Advisor)
The PM Makes a Statement After The Tel Aviv Islamic Jihadist was Caught by Israeli Special Forces
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this morning (Sunday, 10 January 2016), made the following remarks at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting:
“The Mossad is an integral part of Israel’s security and is becoming more and more important in the complex world in which we live. With the rise of radical Islam and the terrorism that it spreads, with the rise of the importance of cybernetics – cyber, precision weapons and weapons of mass destruction, the Mossad has a role that is becoming increasingly central in dealing with all these threats, as well as in forging links with many more countries, including in the Arab world, than can be mentioned here as a result of Israel’s clear and aggressive policy against radical Islam and its technological, intelligence and operational progress, no small part of which is due to the Mossad.
Today we are taking our leave, with gratitude and appreciation, from Tamir Pardo after five years as head of the Mossad and after long years in service to the security of the state. We welcome Yossi Cohen as head of the Mossad. Both of them have many merits as well as much experience.
Tamir, you submitted for my approval countless operations and actions. I approved almost all of them and I did so out of complete confidence in the professionalism, commitment and dedication of the men and women of the Mossad, and yours as the leader of these operations, which are so important to Israel’s security. Even if they are not known to the public they are certainly known to me and they deserve the deep appreciation and esteem of all Israelis.
Yossi, you have had personal knowledge of the Mossad for many years. In the last two years you also served as head of the National Security Council; you are certainly familiar with all of the people I have mentioned here. Therefore, I would like to take leave of you, Tamir, in gratitude for all you have done for Israel’s security. Yossi, thank you for all that you will do for the security of the state. Thank you both.
Today the cabinet will approve draft legislation on reducing tariffs for public transportation. After we reduced the prices of water and electricity and enacted reforms in the food sector, we are reducing the prices of public transportation, which also has clear social significance. Usually, those who use public transportation, the major tendency is more those of reduced economic means, this is a significant easement.
We also will approve today a NIS 2 billion multi-year plan for the development of the Druze and Circassian communities. The plan touches on many areas of life – education, construction and infrastructure, welfare, employment and tourism, and it will help to reduce disparities and promote the population that serves in the IDF and sees itself as part of the State of Israel.
In this respect I would like to touch on the broader subject – any sensible person knows that there are large gaps between the Arab and Jewish population, resource gaps and disparities in law enforcement, gaps and discrepancies in rights and obligations. These gaps formed over decades, and it is time to make a major national effort to reduce them. In recent years, the governments which I have led have invested significant resources in the Arab sector, and the unprecedented government program approved ten days ago will do even more in this direction.