The Likud faction on Thursday voted unanimously in favor of an amendment to the “From Uniform to University” Law, so that it provide a scholarship of 100 percent for discharged IDF fighters seeking to enroll in university.
The decision means that the Likud will oppose the law in the version promoted by the coalition.
"We will bring the reservation calling for 100 percent to the Knesset plenum, an addition that means 50 million shekels, and if the coalition votes down the reservation - we will oppose the law," the Likud announced and charged, "Bennett gave 50 billion shekels to Mansour Abbas and took 50 million shekels to renovate his house in Raanana. But he cynically refuses to give a 100 percent scholarship to our fighters, the total cost of which is at most 50 million shekels."
"The shameful spin on the backs of IDF soldiers made by a government that relies on supporters of terrorism will not succeed. The Likud faction will oppose all the bills of this dangerous government and will work vigorously to topple this government and establish a strong government in Israel that will restore security and respect for our fighters and members of the security forces."
The Likud also said: "The first law that a Likud-led government will pass will be a 100 percent law, which will also apply retroactively to those who serve today."
The Blue and White Party said in response to the Likud’s decision, "16,500 soldiers are waiting for the ‘From Uniform to University’ Law to pass in the Knesset this coming Monday. We will continue to work to obtain the required majority for IDF fighters. We call on all Likud members to get a hold of themselves and not to harm IDF soldiers who are waiting to receive the scholarship."
The Likud’s decision follows an announcement by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Defense Minister Benny Gantz and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid who said on Wednesday evening they would bring the “From Uniform to University” Law to a vote in the Knesset on Monday, in an attempt to humiliate the Likud.
"On Monday, we will present to the Knesset plenum the Defense Minister's ‘From Uniform to University’ Law for a vote by roll call. All the discharged fighters and their families will be able to watch the Likud Knesset members live on TV. We call on the opposition members to put politics aside for the benefit of our soldiers," said the statement from Bennett, Gantz and Lapid.
The chairman of the Religious Zionism Party, MK Bezalel Smotrich, responded to the statement and wrote, "On Wednesday, we will present to the Knesset plenum the law banning the return of terrorist bodies for a vote by roll call. All Israeli citizens will be able to watch the coalition members live on TV. We call on the coalition members, put politics aside, for the benefit of our soldiers, and our citizens."