THE WEEK AHEAD: Will the Israeli government survive a critical week? Will the IAEA board condemn Iran?
Here are the stories we are watching...
Will the Israeli government survive another week?
Will the IAEA condemn Iran?
New immigrants from Ethiopia make Aliyah
German interior minister to visit Israel
Tel Aviv pride parade
WILL THE GOVERNMENT MAKE IT TO ONE YEAR?
With only 60 seats in a parliament of 120, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s coalition faces another big test this week with perhaps the most crucial vote in parliament since the current government was sworn in on June 13, 2021.
The bill in question regulates the extension of Israeli law to the West Bank. Set to expire by the end of June, the bill must be renewed by the Knesset every five years. Justice Minister Gideon Saar said the vote “will show if the coalition wants to continue to exist or not."
The opposition vowed it will not support any coalition-sponsored legislation, even if its members are ideologically supportive, such as the Likud and Religious Zionism parties.
If the current government wishes to survive, it needs all the votes of the Islamist party, Ra’am, and left-wing parties, Meretz and Labor, to vote for the bill.
The opposition and its leader, Benjamin Netanyahu, are already engaged in efforts to undermine the government and replace it with a new one under his leadership. Channel 12 News reported that coalition member Ze’ev Elkin has been negotiating with Netanyahu’s Likud party in order to prepare for such a scenario.
WILL THE IAEA CONDEMN IRAN?
The IAEA board of governors is set to meet this week and hear directly from the United Nation’s nuclear watchdog chief Rafael Grossi on the conclusions of a report on Iran’s nuclear development. Grossi arrived in Israel on Thursday for a short visit ahead of the crucial meeting.
A new report released last week indicated that Iran has amassed a sufficient amount of enriched uranium to build a nuclear weapon. The report also said that traces of nuclear material were found at three undeclared sites. The United States, France, Britain and Germany are pushing for the IAEA board to condemn Iran in a shared draft resolution. Israel is also investing similar efforts.
Iran failed to provide answers to IAEA inspectors and instead said the report was neither fair nor balanced.
NEW IMMIGRANTS FROM ETHIOPIA ARRIVE IN ISRAEL
Two flights carrying hundreds of Ethiopian Jewish immigrants will land in Israel next week, as part of the second stage of Operation Tzur Yisrael. The Aliyah initiative is set to bring around 3,000 first-degree relatives of Ethiopian immigrants who have been waiting for years in camps in Ethiopia to be reunited with their families.
The effort is coordinated between the Jewish Agency and Israel’s Ministry of Aliyah and Integration, which has set up five new absorption centers that will welcome the immigrants. It is also supported by Korean Christian supporters of Israel.
The current operation began in September 2020, and was halted in March 2021 during the pandemic. Last year, 1,636 Ethiopian Jews made aliyah. Last November, the government vowed to renew the airlifts.
"Together we will make sure that the immigrants finally fulfill their dream," said Aliyah and Integration Minister Pnina Tamano-Shata, the first Ethiopian-born woman to serve in the Knesset.
TEL AVIV PRIDE PARADE
Tel Aviv is known as one of the most LGBTQ-friendly cities in the world and the Gay Capital of the Middle East. The TLV Pride Parade is one of the biggest events of the year in the coastal city and reveals just how far the nation has strayed from its biblical foundations.
This will be the first year since the outbreak of the pandemic that the event will take place while tourists are allowed to enter unrestricted, and organizers are expecting many to attend. Throughout the month of June, the city offers many gay-friendly events, culminating on the Friday with the pride parade.
The Jerusalem Pride Parade took place last week.
GERMAN INTERIOR MINISTER VISIT
German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser is expected to travel to Israel to hold talks on public security, cyber security and combating anti-Semitism. During her three-day trip, which begins on Monday, the minister will sign a signing of a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in police training, her office said.
The Social Democrat (SPD) politician is scheduled to meet Israel's Public Security Minister Omer Bar-Lev on Tuesday. The two minsters will discuss the deepening of bilateral cooperation in the field of security, expending cooperation around deradicalization, as well as in cyber-crime investigations.
This week we are also keeping an eye on these developing stories:
...Do recent reports indicate that Israel and Saudi Arabia are inching closer to normalization?
...Could Israel shutter Ben-Gurion airport again due to coronavirus surge?
...What security lessons can Israel learn from the situation in Ukraine?
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.