Israel Allocates $7.8m to Fund for Gaza Op. Reserve Soldiers

The fund will accept requests from self-employed workers and salaried employees who lost income or who had ordered flight tickets and had to cancel them without refund.

AP

Some 30 million shekels (over $7.8 million) have been allocated to a fund earmarked to compensate reserve soldiers who served during Operation Protective Edge. The fund began accepting compensation requests from reserve soldiers on Sunday.

The fund will accept requests from self-employed workers and salaried employees who lost income or who had ordered flight tickets and had to cancel them without refund.

Only those who served at least three days are eligible. Text messages about the fund were sent Sunday to all soldiers who served at least three days during the operation, and the Israel Defense Forces called on anyone who feels he suffered financial harm because of his reserve service during the fighting to apply to the fund.

However, the defense establishment will not allow the fund to exceed its budget. “In the event the total compensation exceeds the budget, the committee is authorized to give preference to eligible reservists who are students or have families,” Col. Sammy Holtzkin, the commander of the IDF personnel center, wrote in the fund’s regulations.

According to an officer in the IDF Personnel Directorate, within two weeks of receipt of a request,  a response will be given to the reservist.

By way of comparison, for the Second Lebanon War, 45 million shekels were allocated to compensate reservists, but only 23 million shekels were actually paid out. Thus, the personnel officer said he believed the 30 million shekels allocated should suffice to compensate those who received emergency call-ups this past summer.

This payment is separate from a special payment to be made in May to active reservists. The criteria and sums of those payments have yet to be announced.