Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, this morning (Sunday, 1 October 2017), at the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting, made the following remarks:

"May you all be written and inscribed for good.

On the eve of Yom Kippur agreements were reached with the handicapped organizations. These agreements will lead to a dramatic improvement in the situation of persons with disabilities in the State of Israel. I think that this is an historic agreement because it entails a significant budgetary increase and this increase will begin in January. But beyond this, this is a NIS 4.2 billion supplement. This is – as the Finance Minister correctly emphasizes – is a supplement of almost 50% of the considerable expenditure that the State of Israel spends on dealing with persons with disabilities.

These agreements express the understanding and the principles that the Finance Minister and I set at the outset. They also include, I would say, certain arrangements to verify that this will not lead to amounts that we will be unable to meet. This is to say that they will maintain the budgetary framework, but also give a very significant supplement to the handicapped, and I think – in a prudent manner.

I would like to thank all those who took part in the negotiations and to the handicapped organizations, to Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon – thank you very much, and National Economic Council Chairman Avi Simhon, thank you sir. I would like to thank coalition chairman MK David Bitan, Histadrut Chairman Avi Nissenkorn, MK Ilan Gilon and other MKs, and all those who, in the end, supported bringing about these agreements. This will be brought to Knesset legislation and it is good that it will receive a significant majority. It substantially changes the face of the country as a first world country that – first of all – truly looks after the weaker links.

What is important in my view is that this will be a supplement to the truly disabled, to allow them to live with honor and also to make a respectable living, and not create a situation of fictitious handicaps. This is the main thing that we considered. I think that these two goals have largely been achieved. Again, I thank everyone who was involved.

Regarding recent remarks about Israel and the people in Kurdistan, in the Kurdish area: I understand why those who support Hamas and want to see the Mossad everywhere that is uncomfortable for them, but Israel had no part in the Kurdish referendum, apart from the deep, natural sympathy that the people of Israel have had for many years for the Kurdish people and their aspirations."

Prime Minister Netanyahu invited National Economic Council Chairman Prof. Simhon to address the aforesaid agreements with the handicapped organizations. Following are the latter's remarks:

"Difficult and intensive negotiations were held in recent months, during which it was possible to mistakenly conclude that the government and the handicapped were on opposite sides of the issue. The Prime Minister and the Finance Minister set out a budgetary framework and principles that were designed to give maximum possible assistance to persons with disabilities in Israel in a way that would not harm the economy. The growth that we have experienced in recent years, the security and Israel's economic strength have made it possible to reach this agreement, which will improve the lives of the handicapped in a manner that is unprecedented in the State of Israel. I thank the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister for the trust they gave me during the negotiations."

Prime Minister Netanyahu also commended Deputy Cabinet Secretary Aryeh Zohar on the occasion of his retirement after 45 years in the civil service.