Smotrich said to threaten PM with budget vote in row over West Bank powers

Finance Minister and head of the Religious Zionism Party Bezalel Smotrich speaks at a conference of the Religious Zionism party in Jerusalem, February 19, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Finance Minister and head of the Religious Zionism Party Bezalel Smotrich speaks at a conference of the Religious Zionism party in Jerusalem, February 19, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich is reportedly threatening to vote against the state budget if he is not handed authority over the West Bank Civil Administration.

According to a Channel 13 report, Smotrich is threatening Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he will not vote in favor of the upcoming budget if he does not move immediately to carry out the move promised in the coalition agreement between Likud and Religious Zionism.

The coalition agreement between the two parties granted Religious Zionism control over the Defense Ministry’s Civil Administration, but the move faced significant pushback from the security establishment as well as the Biden administration, and it has yet to be implemented, infuriating Smotrich

A cabinet meeting on the state budget is slated to be held tomorrow at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem.

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