(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister’s Office Director-General Ilan Cohen met today (Sunday), 3 October 2004, with Sderot Mayor Eli Moyal. The two men discussed continued steps to strengthen the city of Sderot and the welfare of its residents.

In accordance with directives from Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, it was agreed at today’s meeting that in addition to previous Cabinet decisions, direct assistance would be immediately provided to the residents of Sderot. It was also agreed that ways of making progress in the fields of employment, education, social welfare and housing would be considered.  The intention is to provide the tools that will lead to an expansion of the cycle of employment in Sderot and to the strengthening of the industrial zones. Regarding housing, new tenders will be issued for the construction of new neighborhoods at preferred prices.

The various government ministries have shown a willingness to cooperate in order to move Sderot forward.

The professional teams are expected to finish formulating the plan this month.