Labor MKs upset Yacimovich met Abbas on her own

MKs complain that "political soloist" Yacimovich only told those in her faction about the meeting after she left Ramallah.

May 13, 2013 17:34
1 minute read.
Abbas and Yacimoch

Abbas and Yacimovich 370. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Labor MKs expressed frustration with party leader Shelly Yacimovich on Monday for going on her own to Ramallah on Sunday to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for the first time since she became opposition leader on March 18.

Yacimovich only told the MKs in her faction about the meeting after she left Ramallah, shortly before she put out a press release and announced the meeting on Facebook.

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MKs complained to her privately about the snub.

In Monday’s faction meeting, Yacimovich expressed optimism that peace talks with the Palestinians could be advanced due to American involvement and the return of the Arab League’s diplomatic initiative. She said she had problems with the initiative but the fact that it was being discussed was positive.

“There is room for hope,” Yacimovich said.

Following the meeting, MK Ghaleb Majadle said that as someone who speaks to Abbas regularly, he could have given Yacimovich key advice had she consulted with him. He revealed that he met with Abbas just two weeks ago.

“I don’t give advice to those who do not seek my advice,” Majadle said.

MK Erel Margalit compared Yacimovich’s behavior with the Abbas meeting to how she ran Labor’s election campaign and coalition talks with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu: By herself without consulting any members of the faction.

“A meeting with Abbas is not a personal thing, it’s a party thing,” Margalit said. “We need to set our positions. It’s good to meet Abbas, but we need to decide what to advance in such a meeting. To present an alternative, we need to speak clearly.”

Another Labor lawmaker lamented that Yacimovich had proven to be a “political soloist” much like former Labor leader Ehud Barak and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni.

But he noted polls showing that Labor’s support is rising again.

“Shelly runs the show herself,” the MK said. “That’s her style. She works alone. It didn’t work well in the election, but she is working hard and if we do well she will get all the credit.”

While Yacimovich had considered holding an expedited Labor leadership race this summer, it is now only expected to take place next winter.

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