Netanyahu Pledges More Welfare Spending as COVID Forces New Shutdowns

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The start of the trial against Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the District Court in Jerusalem. PM Netanyahu is on trial on criminal allegations of bribery, fraud and breach of trust. May 24, 2020. Photo by Amit Shabi/POOL ***POOL PICTURE, EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES, PLEASE CREDIT THE PHOTOGRAPHER AS WRITTEN - AMIT SHABI/POOL*** *** Local Caption *** ???? ????? ??? ???? ????? ???? ??????

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced a new welfare package on Thursday for Israelis who have lost livelihoods due to the coronavirus crisis, saying the measures would provide an economic safety net for the coming year.

A surge in contagion prompted the government to reimpose closures on businesses this week, dashing hopes of a recovery from a record 21% unemployment and stoking anger at the slow payout of $29 billion in aid previously pledged by the state.

In a televised news conference, Netanyahu said Israel would make those who lost jobs to the crisis eligible for welfare through to mid-2021, provide retraining for “coronavirus-era professions” and expedite grants for ailing businesses.

“We want to arrive at a situation where people know how we will manage to live over the coming year,” he said. “It would cover all of the losses, but we have to provide a security net.”

Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

{Matzav.com}

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