JERUSALEM (JTA) — A Knesset bill to expand the number of Israeli government ministers from its current limit of 18 was approved by lawmakers on its third reading.
The second and third readings were held Wednesday afternoon in the Knesset plenum. The bill passed by a vote of 61-59, with all 61 members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s new coalition voting in favor and all members of the opposition voting against.
The proposal, an amendment to the Basic Law, overturns a law passed during the last Knesset term limiting the number of Cabinet ministers and deputy ministers.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly plans to increase the cabinet by two ministers and four deputy ministers, in order to satisfy his coalition partners and members of his own Likud Party.
Netanyahu reportedly plans to swear in the new government on Thursday, after parceling out the ministerial positions in meetings over Wednesday evening and Thursday morning.