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Israel to cut ultra-Orthodox seminaries funding by 30 pct


20:30, April 23, 2013

JERUSALEM, April 23 (Xinhua) -- An Israeli ministerial committee has decided to cut the funding for ultra-Orthodox seminaries by 30 percent, local Ma'ariv daily reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, the move was authorized by Finance Minister Yair Lapid and will save the country approximately NIS 340 million (94 million U.S. dollars) every year.

Up to now, the government funds the seminary institutions with NIS 1.04 billion (300 million dollars) a year.

The committee, tasked with equalizing burdens in the Israeli society, will also work on a replacement for the expired Tal Law, which granted ultra-Orthodox seminary students exemption from military service and funds for their education.

The law used to be disputed by many secular Israeli citizens.

The committee will present its recommendations for the conscription of ultra-Orthodox men in the upcoming month.

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