Crossing for Palestinian Arab workers to enter Israel
Crossing for Palestinian Arab workers to enter IsraelJorge Novominsky/Flash 90

A discussion in the Political-Security Cabinet, which dealt with a proposal to allow the entry of Palestinian Arab workers from Judea and Samaria into Israel, ended overnight Sunday without agreements being reached on the issue.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided not to hold a vote at the conclusion of the discussion, since many ministers expressed strong opposition to the move and there was a concern that he would not have a majority to pass the decision.

A cabinet minister quoted by Kan 11 News said that "Netanyahu realized that there was no chance of achieving a majority for the decisions he wanted to advance and decided not to put them to a vote, even though the cabinet meeting was specifically designed to bring about the approval of the entry of Palestinian workers and the transfer of funds to the Palestinian Authority."

Earlier Sunday evening, the Socio-Economic Cabinet, headed by Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, unanimously voted against the defense establishment's proposal to increase the number of Palestinian Arab workers who are allowed to enter Israel under restrictions.

All cabinet ministers opposed the proposal, with the exception of Agriculture Minister Avi Dichter and Labor Minister Yoav Ben-Tzur, who abstained.

Smotrich said, "I thank my friends in the Cabinet for their vote against the entry of Arab workers, who live in Judea and Samaria, to work in areas within the Green Line. A significant part of the internalization of the collapse of the concept is that it is forbidden to continue what was going on in the past. Money and building permits do not buy peace. Those who kill us when they have no money, will also kill us when they have money."

He added, "The security of the citizens of Israel comes first and we recommend to the Political-Security Cabinet not to approve the entry of the workers. We can and should promote alternatives that will provide a different solution to the economy."