Labor party leader Shelly Yacimovich said Wednesday that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was merely "modeling" a diplomatic process with the Palestinians to impress US President Barack Obama and had no intention of pursuing a "real peace process."
Speaking in an interview with Israel Radio, Yacimovich suggested that the coalition agreement signed between the Tzipi Livni Party and Likud Beytenu was motivated by "political survival," and not ideology. The Tzipi Livni Party became the first partner in Netanyahu’s next coalition last week, with Livni to serve as justice minister and leader of negotiations with the Palestinian Authority.
Yacimovich stated that their was a "massive gap" in the positions of Labor and Netanyahu and that it would take a complete turnaround in the prime minister's positions before Labor would consider joining a Netanyahu-led coalition.
"If Netanyahu changes his positions, we will reconsider the situation," Yavimovich told Israel Radio, adding that she did not envision such a scenario taking place.
She stated that, while Netanyahu believes in "austerity," and putting the largest burden on the poor and the middle class, the Labor party says the opposite, "that the middle class is the engine that moves the economy" and should be invested in.
"Netanyahu changing his ways and becoming more social-democratic is as likely as him agreeing to go back to the 1967 lines without keeping the settlement blocs," she stated.
The Labor leader added that the party would support a peace process with the Palestinians from the opposition in the event that Netanyahu would present a diplomatic initiative. She added that Labor would consider joining the coalition if it were necessary to push through a historic peace agreement.
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