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Knesset Passes 2023-2024 Budget, Bibi Says ’Judicial Reform’ Will Return
By Staff, Agencies
The “Israeli” entity’s Knesset passed the 2023-2024 budget early on Wednesday by a 64-56 vote.
The spending package of $131 billion for this year and $139 billion for next year was ratified in a final vote after nearly 36 hours of intense discussions, according to the Knesset’s statement.
The bill’s approval comes after friction between the coalition and several of its parties, which put the government at risk of reaching the budget deadline on Monday and sending the “Israeli” entity to automatic elections.
Notably, the entity’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held extensive talks with leaders from “Jewish Power” and “United Torah Judaism” factions. Right-wing firebrand Itamar Ben-Gvir, the entity’s so-called “national security” minister, had demanded additional funds for spending in the occupied West Bank.
Some $68.5 million will go to Jewish religious students, with a total of $1.37 billion allocated to the ultra-Orthodox community. Several thousand protesters gathered in al-Quds [Jerusalem] while lawmakers deliberated Tuesday night.
Meanwhile, Netanyahu praised the coalition for coming together and reaching an agreement on the allocation of the entity’s funds. After the passing of the budget, Bibi said that the controversial “judicial reform” “will return” but the government would try to come to an understanding over it.
Opposition Leader Yair Lapid blasted the budget for neglecting young children, saying it “breaks apart the future” of the “Israeli” entity. Netanyahu, he charged, is living in “an alternate reality.”
“Our children will be the first generation that will be poorer than its parents, because more and more people will not work and will not receive tools for the workplace, will not study mathematics, English and computers, and will not be able to support themselves, so someone will need to support them,” Lapid said.
The entity’s Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich in turn said the budget will "provide stability and certainty to the economy."
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