The Israel Report

March 2001

1948 - by Reuven Rubin

Basic Guidelines of the Government of Israel - Jerusalem, March 7, 2001

(Selected Excerpts - Ministry of Foreign Affairs Website)

1. General

The Government will strive to achieve the following national goals:
  • To ensure national and personal security for every citizen of the State.
  • To achieve security and genuine peace between Israel and its neighbors on the basis of stable peace agreements.
  • To create conditions conducive to free economic development, a thriving economy and social welfare.
  • To ensure the status of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
  • To intensify educational efforts and strengthen the connection with our Jewish heritage and the realization of Zionism.
  • To fight poverty and unemployment, narrow social gaps, and improve the quality of life in development towns, deprived neighborhoods and other areas in distress.
  • To encourage aliyah to Israel and the successful absorption of immigrants in all aspects of society.
  • To strengthen, broaden and develop settlement throughout the country.
  • To reinforce democracy, human rights and the principle of rule by law.
  • To strengthen equality in Israeli society among all sectors, ethnic and other groups in the population.
1.1 The Government will work towards unity of the people, by improving relations among all citizens, nurturing tolerance, moderation and respect for others, mending the divisions within the nation, and providing hope for a better future for all citizens of Israel.

1.2 The Government will strive to ensure that Israel remains a Jewish, democratic, Zionist state that encourages aliyah and whose citizens enjoy equal rights.

1.3 The Government will strive to develop a free and balanced economy. The Government views the reduction of gaps and application of principles of social justice as essential elements of its economic policy.

1.4 The Government will act to promote stable growth through integration in the world economy, improve the standard of living, and advance science, technology and industry.

1.5 The Government will act to advance broad sectors of the people, to narrow gaps, and to raise the standard of living of weaker sectors through the advancement of development towns and the development and rehabilitation of distressed neighborhoods.

1.6 The Government will act to effect a real improvement in the fields of public health, employment and living conditions, and in the treatment of the elderly, pensioners, the handicapped, large and one-parent families, and people living in financial and social distress.

1.7 The Government will preserve the Jewish character of the state and Jewish tradition, and will respect all other religions and traditions present in the State of Israel.

1.8 The Government will set policies that preserve the dignity of every individual in society and promote individual welfare, security and quality of life.

1.9 The Government will act to promote equality between the sexes and encourage conditions for the advancement of women in the Government, the academic world, the labor force and the economy. The Government will combat the phenomenon of violence against women, violence in the family and sexual harassment.

1.10 The Government will support cultural and artistic enterprises as well as individual artists, and will encourage the development of new talent in order to create a climate of creativity and a flourishing of culture in Israel.

1.11 The Government will strengthen the ties between Israel and Diaspora Jewry through ongoing dialogue, and find ways to strengthen Jewish and Zionist identity and help in the struggle against assimilation. The Government, together with world Jewry, will combat anti-Semitism and racism.

1.12 The Government will work towards strategic planning, so that Israel may become an advanced, modern state run efficiently and with justice, striding confidently and peacefully towards a better future in the 21st century.

2. Security, Peace and Settlement

The factions which are partners in this coalition have decided to serve together in one Government, in light of the grave security and political challenges facing Israel, although each continues to adhere to its ideological positions on the political issues and on the subject of settlement, especially regarding the nature of permanent agreements and the conditions thereof. Accordingly, despite differences of opinion existing between them, they have decided to participate in a joint Government based on a broad national consensus, according to these principles:

2.1 The supreme goal of the new Government is to consolidate Israel's security and promote regional stability. The Government will act to strengthen national security and provide personal security to its citizens through a determined fight against violence and terrorism. The Government of Israel will demand that the Palestinians abandon the path of violence and terrorism and that the Palestinian Authority fulfill its commitments as per the agreements it has signed and forcefully combat violence and terrorism directed at Israel, its citizens, residents and soldiers.

2.2 The Government of Israel will act to promote peace with all the states and peoples in the region, while maintaining Israel's historical, national and security interests. The achievement of peace requires painful compromises by all the parties involved. The Government will strive to achieve stability and prosperity for all the peoples of the region. The Government believes that direct negotiations is the correct way to establish relations of trust between the sides and to promote peace.

2.3 The Government of Israel will honor previous political agreements ratified by the Knesset, conditional on their being upheld by the other side.

2.4 The Government will strive to achieve permanent peace agreements with Syria and the Palestinians, based on UN Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338.

2.5 The Government of Israel demands that the Government of Lebanon uphold its part in the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 425 and calls upon Lebanon to enter into a peace agreement with Israel. Israel holds Lebanon and Syria resonsible for preventing terrorist activities that threaten the peace and security of residents of northern Israel and IDF soldiers.

2.6 The Government will act to promote peace with the Palestinians also through interim agreements that will include compromises. In the framework of interim agreements, the possibility of Israeli redeployment in Judea, Samaria and Gaza will be considered, as long as this does not harm Israel's interests.

2.7 The Government will do everything in its power to secure the release of POW's and MIA's and anyone who acted on behalf of state security, and to bring them home.

2.8 The Government views settlement, in all its manifestations, as having great social and national value, and will act to improve the ability to deal with the difficulties and challenges facing the settlement effort.

2.9 During its term of office, the Government will not establish new settlements. The Government will provide the ongoing necessities for the development of the settlements.

2.10 The Government will act with firm resolve to ensure the security of the Jewish residents of Judea, Samaria and Gaza.

2.11 The Government will reinforce the IDF and the other branches of Israel's security forces and strengthen Israel's power of deterrence, with the aim of preventing war and protecting the state, its citizens and residents. The Government will reserve the right to call out the IDF and the security forces where and when needed, to ensure the safety of Israelis citizens and residents, and of the Jewish people in the Diaspora.

2.12 The Government of Israel will demand a cessation of incitement and hostility towards Israel in the Palestinian Authority and the Arab countries.

2.13 The Government will work towards establishing peaceful, friendly, normal relations with Egypt and Jordan.

2.14 The Government will strive to deepen the special relationship of friendship and closeness that exists between Israel and the United States, and to continue and even enhance the strategic cooperation between them.

2.15 The Government will work to consolidate and deepen Israel's foreign relations with the European Union and the European states.

2.16 The Government will strive to strengthen Israel's foreign relations with Russia and the CIS.

2.17 The Government will deepen and consolidate relations with China, India, Japan and East Asian countries, as well as with the international community in general.

2.18 The Government, as part of its policy to promote peace in the Middle East, will work towards developing frameworks for cooperation among the peoples of the region in the political, economical, scientific and cultural spheres.

2.19 The Government of Israel will combat, constantly and resolutely, manifestations of anti-Semitism throughout the world, and cultivate the mutual ties and responsibility between the Israel and Jewish communities in the Diaspora.

2.20 The Government will work to relieve the distressed situation of the SLA refugees.

10. Religion and State

10.5 The Government will safeguard the holy places of all religions. Furthermore, the Government will take measures to enable Jews to pray at their holy places and others to pray at their holy places, with consideration for the requirements of public security and order.
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