Replacement Found for Regev at Kosel Committee

YERUSHALAYIM -

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has found a replacement for Culture Minister Miri Regev, who resigned from the Kosel committee last week: himself.

After Regev said that her conscience would not allow her to oversee an upgrading of the egalitarian prayer site at the Kosel, giving the Reform and Conservative movements a foothold at the holy site, Netanyahu was unable to find a willing substitute. When he asked for a volunteer at a Likud meeting, there weren’t any.

So, the prime minister gained approval from the Knesset to transfer authority over infrastructure changes from Regev to himself. This, to adjust the prior existing legal requirement that renovations to holy sites be authorized by a special ministerial committee to be chaired by the culture minister, along with two other ministers.

The other two ministers will be Religious Services Minister David Azoulai, who remained on the committee after Regev left, and Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz, who agreed to join it after Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked also left.

Shaked gave no explanation for her decision, whether it was for the same reason as Regev, or not.