Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has offered representatives of the state’s Druze population a proposal to pass new legislation strengthening the status of the community.
The initiative comes in response to Druze criticism of the recently-passed “Jewish nation state” bill.
According to Haaretz, representatives of the Druze community said that Netanyahu’s proposal is “a window of opportunity to set a historical precedent for the advancement of the Druze community and its status in the State of Israel”.
The report added that “representatives, headed by Sheikh Muwafak Tarif, will continue talks with Netanyahu’s team, which has been appointed to make an agreement on both sides.”
Haaretz stated that “the plan outlines a Basic Law and a regular law that will recognise the contribution of minorities who defend the country by ‘enshrining eligibility for the benefits of minority members of all religions and communities who serve in the security forces, for the purpose of closing gaps and promoting social equality’.”
According to the plan submitted by the prime minister’s representatives, “the law will recognise the contribution of the Druze community to the security of the state, and will include support for community institutions (religion, education and culture), will strengthen Druze residential settlements, and establish new towns if needed. It will also preserve and cultivate Druze heritage.”