PM Netanyahu announced that attorney Joseph Ciechanover would be Israel’s representative on the panel of inquiry, established by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, on the maritime incident of 31 May 2010.

 Cabinet communique


Israel Cabinet meeting (Reuters archive photo)

(Communicated by the Cabinet Secretariat)
At the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday, 8 August 2010):
1. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the following remarks:
"I would like to convey Cabinet’s condolences to the Bernstein family, which suffered a terrible tragedy in the railroad accident near Kiryat Gat.  Aryeh, Rivka,  their four children – Malka, 21, who was pregnant; Yohanan, 16; Chaya, 14 and Mordechai Aharon, 9 – and Malka’s 1.5-year-old son, also named Mordechai Aharon, perished in this accident, may their memories be blessed.
We believe that there was, apparently, human error here because the proper arrangements – including a lookout and signs – were in place.  However, we esteem Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz’s decision to appoint a team to inquire into how to prevent such a horrific disaster from recurring.  We hope that its recommendations will be applied forthwith.
Minister Michael Eitan will brief us on his plan to improve Government service to the public.  We mean ways to bring about an improved, more efficient and more technology-rich public service.  I must say that this is taking place across Israeli society in various sectors.  If you receive service from a commercial company and you are unsatisfied with it, you go to its competitor.  A citizen cannot go to Government offices that compete with Government offices.  Public service is a monopoly.  There is no possibility of going to the Spanish or Greek governments for the necessary government services; therefore, we must improve this monopoly and like all monopolies, it needs significant improvements.
We will hear about some of the steps, about a very important part.  Especially in the computer and internet age, it is possible to spare Israeli citizens from considerable bother.  They don’t need to go to clerk A, who will send them to clerk B and back to clerk A.  Almost everything is online and it is really possible to spare Israelis from much bother and hassle.  Some of what I have described will be presented here today.
Infrastructures Minister Uzi Landau will brief us on the electricity sector in Israel.  This will be one of our discussions on basic infrastructure.  We did so on the water issue; we made decisions, a few important things remain, and we will complete them.  Today, we will begin a similar discussion on the electricity sector.  We face three groups of decisions – on the electricity itself and the energy that we want to produce, environmental protection and competition.
To the extent that it is possible, we would like there to be a competitive and efficient sector that does not harm the environment.  These things usually clash, and therefore a decision and budgets are necessary.  We will not decide today.  We will have a comprehensive briefing, after which I will decide on the forum and the inter-ministerial team via which we will be able to make our decisions."
Prime Minister Netanyahu added that attorney Joseph Ciechanover would be Israel’s representative on the panel of inquiry established by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, and which will be chaired by former New Zealand Prime Minister Geoffrey Palmer, on the maritime incident of 31.5.10.  Click here for further details.
2. Pursuant to Article 29a of the 2000 Prohibition on Money-Laundering Law, the Cabinet confirmed the appointment of Paul Landis as Director of the Israel Money Laundering and Terror Financing Prohibition Authority for a six-year term.
3. Pursuant to Article 23 of the 1959 State Service Law (Appointments) and its 21.2.10 and 9.5.10 decisions, the Cabinet appointed Reuven Pinsky as Senior Division Head in the Prime Minister’s Office, with responsibility for the national heritage sites infrastructure plan, effective as of 22.9.10, or any earlier date approved by Prime Minister’s Office Director-General Eyal Gabai.
4. National Infrastructures Minister Uzi Landau, National Infrastructures Ministry Director-General Shaul Tzemach and senior Ministry officials briefed the Cabinet on the 2010-2016 plan to develop the electricity sector.
5. The Cabinet approved Minister Michael Eitan’s proposal regarding the improvement of Government service to the public.  Click here for further details.