Israel's Minister of Health Yaakov Litzman (United Torah Judaism) has informed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he is resigning because no understandings have been reached regarding Israel Railways maintenance work on Saturdays.
Minister of Labor and Social Welfare Haim Katz, who had been charged a year ago with handling the crisis between the ultra-orthodox United Torah Judaism party and its coalition partners had said earlier this week that some of the maintenance work had to be carried out on Saturdays, because it was not possible to take safety risks with public transport. His comments angered Litzman and over the past 48 hours there have been talks between Litzman and Netanyahu.
Over the past few hours, it was decided that despite Litzman's resignation, which will go into effect on Sunday, United Torah Judaism will remain in the ruling coalition, thus preventing the dissolution of the government.
Katz said, "After the deep examination that I carried out, I approved implementation only of vital work for maintaining safety for rail traffic, where not carrying out the work could have caused harm to life. This decision fully takes into account the sensibilities of the Orthodox public on the one hand and maintains the routine for passengers using the railway on Sunday, on the other hand."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on November 24, 2017
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