During a parliamentary session in the Knesset on Wednesday, President Reuven Rivlin criticized the government’s conduct during the current COVID-19 pandemic.

“It appears that we have lost the compass that has accompanied us from the establishment of the state to this day. The compass of principles and basic values, which we are committed to uphold,” he said.

“For two years now, the State of Israel has been functioning without a budget, the education system has not been able to formulate a clear direction for tackling the distance learning challenge, and many students are left behind, the digital divide is widening, and we may lose the next generation. Do not let the welfare systems collapse, in the face of at-risk youth without a framework, in the face of brutal violence against women, in the face of lonely elderly people, in the face of growing poverty,” Rivlin said.

“Take care of them today. Take care of them now. Businesses are collapsing, unemployment is high, the deficit is growing, and the medical system is collapsing under the burden of morbidity. Pass a budget now, and allow the Israeli economy the basic stability that it needs,” Rivlin told his fellow Knesset members.