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Israel gets welfare minister

Israeli Tourism Minister Isaac Herzog moved to the Social Welfare Ministry as part of a long-awaited Cabinet reshuffle. The welfare portfolio largely had been neglected by the government until now, but Herzog vowed to use it to step up benefits to Israel’s underclasses and offset growing wage disparities. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Herzog also would be responsible for liaising with Diaspora Jewish communities and fighting anti-Semitism. The tourism portfolio will go from Herzog’s Labor Party to the Yisrael Beiteinu Party.