The government will increase its annual grant to World War II veterans by 40 percent, according to a bill that the Knesset Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Committee approved for its second and third readings Wednesday.

The legislation ups the grant, which is given to 4,600 veterans and 400 widows and widowers, from NIS 2,200 to NIS 3,000, and will cost the Immigration Absorption Ministry, which proposed the bill, NIS 4 million each year.

“You endangered your lives, saved the Jewish people and contributed to the Nazis’ defeat,” Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Committee chairman Yoel Razbozov (Yesh Atid) said to veterans in the meeting.

Razbozov promised to bring the law to its final vote as soon as possible so the veterans would receive the increased grant this May.

Immigration Absorption Ministry Director-General Oded Forer said “this bill is the little we can do to help a population of people to whom we are grateful.”

The bill would help them live in dignity and increased the grant from 25% to 35% of the average salary, Forer added.

Association of Disabled Veterans of the War against Nazism chairman Avraham Michael Grinzeid asked the Knesset to make sure the grant was given in total in May, instead of being split into two payments, and Forer said he would look into it.

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