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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this morning (Sunday, 5 August 2018), at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting, made the following remarks:

“Deputy Cabinet Secretary Gabi Golan, you are opening the Cabinet meeting and not Cabinet Secretary Tzachi Braverman because he is in the week of mourning for his mother and all of us here send him and his family our condolences.

The State of Israel is the national state of the Jewish people. Israel is a Jewish and democratic state. Individual rights are anchored in many laws including Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty.

Nobody has harmed – and nobody intends to harm – these individual rights but without the Nation-State Law it will be impossible to ensure for [future] generations the future of Israel as a Jewish national state.

The Nation-State Law, first of all, entrenches the Law of Return. It raises it to another level and this law, of course, grants an automatic right to Jews, and only to them, to come here and receive citizenship. The Nation-State Law, for example, prevents the exploitation of the family reunification clause under which very, very many Palestinians have been absorbed into the country since the Oslo agreement, and this law helps prevent the continued uncontrolled entry into Israel of Palestinians. It could be that this law will also be able to assist us in blocking the future entry of labor migrants.

These and other things are happening because the laws of the state anchored in basic laws only individual rights without any constitutional balance vis-à-vis our national component; therefore, we legislated the Nation-State Law in order to ensure the existence of the State of Israel as a state that is not only democratic but as the national state of the Jewish people and of it alone. This is necessary not only for our generation but for the coming generations.

The deep bond between the Druze community and our commitment to it are also essential; therefore, today we will establish a special ministerial committee to advance this bond and this commitment and at the same time will appreciate those of all religions and all ethnic communities who serve in the IDF and the security forces.

Over the weekend we received important news. The credit rating company Standard & Poor’s raised Israel’s rating to AA, which positions Israel among the strongest economies in the world. This joins, of course, the confirmation of Israel’s credit rating by Moody’s several weeks ago.

This attests to the responsible economic policy that we in the government have been conducting – the Finance Minister and fellow ministers. This policy has led to continuous growth in the Israeli economy. As I read some of the analysts who say ‘Continuous growth, but it has not improved the lot of the weak’ – this is simply incorrect. Year after year we see a decline in the disparity index, which is improving step by step, because we are combining, first of all, a free market policy with entry into the labor force, and as soon as people enter the labor force their situation improves. And indeed, the policy here is correct both economically and socially, and we will continue on these two axes on behalf of the citizens of Israel.”


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