Israel’s Movement for the Freedom of Information struck a victory as it demanded the public has a right to know just what the prime minister has been doing with his time. Hence, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s agenda for meetings during 2013-2014 was released to the public. We have learned that while Mr. Netanyahu met with Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon 35 times, he never met with Minister of Welfare & Social Services (Yesh Atid) Meir Cohen or with Minister of Immigrant Absorption (Yisrael Beitenu) Sofia Landver.
Health Minister (Yesh Atid) Yael German met with the prime minister once, and Housing Minister (Bayit Yehudi) Uri Ariel met with him three times.
The prime minister held 155 policy meetings in 2013, and 114 in 2014. In addition, in 2013 Mr. Netanyahu participated in 60 ceremonies and events, and an additional 85 in 2014. Two years ago the prime minister was in Knesset 47 times and 41 times in the past year.
Undoubtedly defense/security issues rank high as the prime minister met with his defense minister 53 times during the past administration. He met with Finance Minister Yair Lapid 33 times and the Governor of the Bank of Israel Prof. Karnit Flug 33 times as well.
Minister of Strategic Affairs Dr. Yuval Steinitz is close to the prime minister. They met 8 times in 2013 and 17 times in 2014. Mr. Netanyahu met with Minister of the Economy Naftali Bennett 9 times in 2013 and 20 times in 2014.
In his last year of this administration the prime minister flew to seven foreign destinations and spent 21 days abroad. He conducted 34 security visits/’briefings and met with representatives of the media 70 times.
The agenda released to the media does not include dozens of meetings between the prime minister and ministers in their capacity in the various ministerial committees.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)