Israeli Army Calls for Extra $5 Billion for 'Sensitive Security Project'

Published October 15th, 2019 - 06:39 GMT
Israeli security forces are seen in the West Bank on 22 December 2017 [JAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP/Getty Images]
Israeli security forces are seen in the West Bank on 22 December 2017 [JAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP/Getty Images]

The Israeli cabinet approved last week a budget of $95 million to finance a “sensitive security project”, however, the army requested an additional $5 billion for its regular budget for the coming year.

Parliamentary sources said that the army determined this budget under “urgent security issues in upcoming wars”, indicating that recent regional developments on various fronts necessitate a new kind of preparation.

The budget increase is necessary to purchase new weapons and conduct intensive training, according to the sources.

Israeli Finance Ministry announced that the security service is demanding to increase its budget by $11.5 billion for the next 10 years, with the first installment to be $5 billion for the coming year.

The Ministry requires that this increase be financed from the army's own budget by taking effective measures, such as halting costly unnecessary projects, shortening mandatory service for males, and replacing personal contracts of junior officers with the permanent service model.

The budget boost was unveiled during the talks between the army command, the Ministry of Defense, and the Ministry of Finance on the multi-year plan. Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon and army chief of staff Aviv Kochavi attended the talks.

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Unlike previous plans five-year plans, the army is demanding this time a 10-year plan, which former security minister, Avigdor Lieberman, also believes should be the case.

Lieberman agreed with the army's demand and even suggested this idea in his proposal for the unity government presented last Thursday.

The urgent budget was approved by the cabinet, with the agreement of all parties, to finance a “sensitive security project” linked to the so-called ongoing security conditions.

The council also approved a portion of the $95 million budget framework, which should be sufficient to finance the first phase of the project, without revealing its details.

In August, the parliamentary Finance Committee approved an “urgent” bill to arm a missile defense system.

It was said that this budget came as the “phase A” of the project, to later consider allocating funds for the remaining phases.

This article has been adapted from its original source.

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