Peretz: Gadamak can't control citizens' vacations

Defense Minister Amir Peretz on Thursday night leveled sharp criticism at billionaire Arkady Gaydamak's offer to fund a vacation in Eilat for Kassam-weary Sderot citizens. "The State of Israel won't allow control by wealthy lords and philanthropists over citizens' troubles," he said. "We will prepare an organized program with the authorities' cooperation to relieve the citizens." He added that it was impossible to simply "order the abandonment of and flight from Sderot"; rather, he said, citizens must be allowed "to take vacations in an organized fashion." His criticism followed a chaotic scene at Sderot's town hall, where citizens arrived in droves to vie for space on the departing buses.