Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked this week unfroze NIS 200 million from the budgets earmarked for Israeli Arab communities at the request of Ra'am chairman MK Mansour Abbas, Shirit Avitan Cohen reported on the Globes website.
According to the report, in a meeting between Abbas and members of Minister Yair Lapid's office, the Ra'am leader demanded that the Interior, Transport and Education ministries unfreeze their respective funds. The Interior Ministry was the first to release funds at the expense of last year's and current budgets.
Interior Ministry officials said the unfrozen money was not related to tenders previously claimed to have indirectly reached companies affiliated with criminal organizations in the Arab sector and which created a situation where funds earmarked for the development of localities in the sector went to criminal elements.
The Ra'am party did not respond to the news, but a party source said that this is money that was delayed for bureaucratic reasons and has now been released.