Bennett gives in to Ra'am's demands: Bedouin affairs to be transferred to Welfare Min.

The government approved transfer of the Bedouin Development and Settlement Authority from the Ministry of Economy to Welfare.

Hezki Baruch ,

ישיבת הממשלה
ישיבת הממשלה
צילום: Photo by Amit Shabi/POOL

At the request of the United Arab List (Ra'am) party, the government this evening (Sunday) approved the transfer of the senior branch of economic and social development in the Bedouin sector and the Bedouin Development and Settlement Authority from the Ministry of Economy to the Ministry of Labor, Welfare and Social Services.

The move comes as part of a coalition agreements signed prior to the formation of the government. The Ra'am party announced this morning it would not be voting according to coalition demands until the move was enacted. In wake of the threat, Prime Minister Bennett decided to bring the issue before a vote.

MK Miki Zohar of the Likud responded to the ruling: "It is not surprising that Bennett agrees to all of [Ra'am's demands]. That's what you're forced to do when you don't have public support behind you. As long as he is prime minister, the State of Israel will [continue] moving backwards in all parameters, whether it's security, the economy, or social interests."

Even before the latest conditions from Ra'am, a number of party members had threatened to bring down the government over the past week. Party MK Walid Taha wrote on his Twitter account: Ra'am will no longer be voting in the Knesset, nor will it be participating in Knesset committee discussions, 'until further notice.'" After that came MK Mazen Ghanaim's threat to overthrow the coalition if Israel commenced attacks on Gaza.

Earlier in the day, the Political-Security Cabinet approved a law presented by Defense Minister Gantz, effectively freezing payments by the Palestinian Authority to terrorists and their families.

According to a report presented by the ministry's Economic Warfare Headquarters, the Palestinian Authority has transferred NIS 597 million towards indirect support for terrorism in 2020 alone.

As of August 1, NIS 50 million will be deducted from taxes collected by Israel for the PA on a monthly basis. The offset funds will be frozen and not put to use by Israeli authorities.

Former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu avoided approving the offset of PA pay-to-slay funding until pressure from the Right forced his hand in the matter.