Tensions inside Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition rose on
Tuesday when Justice Minister Tzipi Livni called for Bayit Yehudi to be replaced
by Labor in order to aide her efforts to achieve a diplomatic agreement with the
Speaking on the 20th anniversary of the completion
of the first Oslo Accords with the Palestinians in Norway, Livni told Israel
Radio that the current composition of the coalition complicated efforts to make
progress with the Palestinians. She said political support for the nascent peace
process would be needed to make key decisions.
“Bayit Yehudi opposes the
two-state solution, and this is very problematic within the context of
negotiations,” Livni said.
Livni said another meeting with PA negotiator
Saeb Erekat had been set. However, she declined to reveal any details about
either the forthcoming meeting or the two times they had met in the past month
in Jerusalem and Washington.
Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett
responded on his Facebook page with one Hebrew word, titgabri, which can be
translated as “get over it.”
Bayit Yehudi’s English-language campaign
head Jeremy Saltan responded on Bennett’s page that “sometimes a one-word status
simply says it all.”
While there were Livni supporters who called
Bennett’s statement chauvinistic, her spokeswoman declined to
Labor leader Shelly Yacimovich told Ha’aretz on Friday that for
Labor to join the government there must be an American “blueprint” for a
final-status agreement, a decision on beginning the evacuation of isolated
settlements and the departure of Bayit Yehudi from the
Yacimovich’s rivals said she had changed what the party was
saying for the past nine months, namely that Labor would join when a peace
agreement was reached between Israel and the Palestinians and the party’s votes
were required to pass it.
Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this
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