Today, the Israeli Defense and Finance Minister met to discuss the possibility of increasing the defense budget by 4.8 billion shekels for the next three years. No agreement was reached.

Kahlon and Lieberman

Kahlon and Lieberman Photo credit: Yonatan Sindel/ Flash 90/ Channel 2 News

Today (Wednesday), Israeli Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon met with Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman to discuss his request to add 4.8 billion shekels (approximately 1.37 billion dollars) to the defense budget over the next three years.

Later, the ministers are expected to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in an attempt to reach an agreement. Over the past several weeks, Kahlon stated that he doesn’t intend to grant the defense minister’s request. Sources stated that the meeting was held in a positive atmosphere, although no results were attained.

Lieberman explained that the defense establishment needs a larger budget to deal with the increasing Russian presence in Syria. “More accurate and high-quality weapons were brought into Hezbollah’s possession,” he stated. “In addition to the accelerated development of ballistic missiles in Iran, the budget must address these issues.”

As of today, 12 percent of Israel’s total budget is allocated to defense. The Ministry of Finance responded to the request and stated that the existing agreement allows the IDF to plan its long-term budget in advance and enables efficient and optimal utilization of resources.