News Brief

Israel’s Knesset approved on Thursday five new Cabinet members, bringing the size of Prime Minister Ehud Barak’s government to 23 ministers. The newest ministers are: Amnon Lipkin-Shahak, of the Center Party, as tourism minister; Chaim Oron, of Meretz, as agriculture minister; Matan Vilnai, of the One Israel bloc, as science minister; Rabbi Michael Melchior, also of One Israel, as minister in the Prime Minister’s Office with responsibility for Diaspora relations and social affairs; and Yuli Tamir, a professor who helped found the Peace Now movement, as absorption minister. Tamir becomes the second woman in Barak’s Cabinet.

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