(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin announced late Wednesday that he had agreed to an opposition move to call the
Knesset plenum into special session next week.
Kadima and Meretz
initiated the call for the special plenum session, during which the plenum will
discuss two topics – the recent government approval of a plan to expand the
draft exemption for haredi men, and this week’s government decision to expel a
number of children of foreign workers.
MK Robert Tibayev (Kadima) was
instrumental in pushing for the special plenum session, which Rivlin scheduled
for next Monday, to discuss the controversial decision by the government to
expand the haredi draft exemption to unmarried men above the age of
Kadima officials said that the government vote – which was
rubber-stamped by ministers, some of whom later said that they were not even
aware of what they were approving – was an attempt by the government to “hijack”
the subject and subvert the legislative process.
“This was an
illegitimate process that’s essence is to break understandings that already
exist within Israeli society,” said Kadima spokesman Shmulik Dahan.
burden of service must be evenly divided, and the attempts by the Netanyahu
government to do this behind our backs undermines these values and
understandings, and Kadima will fight it.”
The legislative status of the
government vote is still being examined by opposition MKs in an attempt to
understand whether it must pass a Knesset vote as well as government approval.
Members of draft advocacy groups said that their understanding was that the new
expanded exemption would go into effect on September 1, and that only afterward,
a government committee would be formed to further examine the issue of the