Defense Minister Ehud Barak called for a new law to replace the controversial Tal Law, and new provisions that would provide free higher education to those who serve in the IDF.
Barak said that the law should only be extended one year, as opposed to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's proposition to extend it by five years, in order to allow a period of time in which to revise the law. The defense minister proposed a quota of somewhere between 2,000 and 3,000 ultra-religious citizens that the government will allow to continue studying in place of mandatory conscription, as per the Tal Law. The rest would be required to serve in the army.
Barak joined critical voices throughout the government opposing the law, including Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee chair Shaul Mofaz (Kadima), who called the Tal Law a failure.
Hundreds of students are expected to protest the Tal Law on Sunday between 9:00 and 10:30 a.m., Army Radio reported. Students sent a letter to the prime minister Saturday, demanding that the government draft a law the treats conscription as "equal to all citizens of Israel."