JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel’s Foreign Ministry, beset by budget issues, now has the money to continue its diplomatic activities worldwide.
The Finance Ministry approved funding on Monday, a day after the Foreign Ministry announced it would halt most diplomatic activity because of a shortfall. The halt in expenditures had been ordered by the Finance Ministry’s accountant general due to a “very large gap” between the ministry’s expenditures and its approved budget.
Talks between the Foreign Ministry and the Treasury will continue in order to come up with a reform package that will enable the former to carry out its duties, The Jerusalem Post reported.
On Monday, a group of former senior ambassadors and Foreign Ministry officials sent a letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressing “deep concern and anxiety” over the downgrading of the status of the Foreign Ministry over the past few years — that is, not providing the needed funding for the ministry — according to the newspaper.
“During this sensitive time, when faced with diplomatic and strategic challenges, first and foremost among them the threat by Iran and its proxies — and on the eve of a U.N. General Assembly— the Foreign Ministry and its missions abroad will be almost entirely paralyzed,” the Foreign Ministry said Sunday in a statement.