Jerusalem, 21 January 1996

CABINET COMMUNIQUE

(Communicated by the Cabinet Secretariat)

At the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday), 21.01.96:

1. The Cabinet was briefed by the Coordinator of Activities in the Territories and the Minister of Public Security on the elections for the Palestinian Authority.

2. The Minister of Public Security told the Cabinet that the elections in Jerusalem were conducted with our consent and under our supervision, and expressed the unity of the city under Israeli rule.

3. The Prime Minister noted the importance of the event and its implications. He emphasized that the democratic elections in the territories represent the best guarantee of peace. The Prime Minister, in this regard, paid tribute to the memory of the late Yitzhak Rabin noting that, had he still been alive, this day would have been one of genuine happiness for him.

4. The Prime Minister expressed great appreciation for the Israeli public servants who invested their efforts to advance this matter, particularly noting Foreign Ministry Legal Advisor Yoel Singer, OC Central Command Maj.- Gen. Ilan Biran and Coordinator of Activities in the Territories Maj.-Gen. Oren Shahor. The Prime Minister also expressed his great appreciation to the Israel Police, and especially Jerusalem District Commander Police Maj.- Gen. Aryeh Amit.

5. The Prime Minister also expressed appreciation to Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat for the positive manner in which he managed this very complex matter.

6. The Prime Minister offered his praise for the assistance of the United States and of European countries in contributing to the success of the elections.

7. The Prime Minister told Cabinet members that the Ministerial Committee on National Security Affairs has decided to allow all members of the Palestinian National Council to enter the Autonomous areas, in order to enable the convening of the PNC and the cancellation of the Palestinian Charter.

8. The Prime Minister reported to Cabinet members on his meeting with the Editors’ Committee. The Prime Minister said that he has asked the Justice Minister to bring a proposed bill on preventing the publication of reports on IDF casualties before their families have been notified for the Cabinet’s approval.

9. In light of the serious occurrences of publication of reports on security matters, the Justice Minister was asked to submit a proposed bill on censorship issues for the Cabinet’s approval intended to replace the existing orders, which do not respond to current needs.

10. The Cabinet approved the recommendations of the Directors-General Committee, headed by the Civil Service Commissioner, on transferring the units, functions and employees of the Economics and Planning Ministry, which is now in the process of being closed.

11. The Cabinet began discussing the recommendations of the committee, headed by retired Judge Mordechai Ben-Dror, and with the participation of the Civil Service Commissioner and the Cabinet Secretary, on formulating new procedures and standards on appointments to Civil Service positions that are exempt from tenders.