(photo credit: REUTERS)
Former Labor Party chairman Amir Peretz will formally return to the party on Monday, at a press conference with current chairman Isaac Herzog.
Peretz led the Labor Party from November 2005 to June 2007. During that time he served as the defense minister.
But after he lost the party leadership to former prime minister Ehud Barak, he was forced to give up the Defense portfolio and his power in the party waned.
Peretz left Labor in December 2012 when it was under the leadership of his protégé turned rival, MK Shelly Yacimovich. He was elected to the Knesset in 2013 with MK Tzipi Livni’s Hatnua party.
Labor and Hatnua ran together in the 2015 election as the Zionist Union, which brought Peretz back into the same faction as Labor. But he technically remained part of Hatnua.
Peretz received permission from Livni to leave Hatnua for Labor, where he intends to be active again. A source close to him said he would reveal at the press conference whether he intends to run for Labor leader again or for another post he once held, head of the Histadrut labor federation.
Yacimovich and Peretz are expected to form an alliance in Labor in an effort to unseat Herzog and his ally, current Histadrut head Avi Nissenkorn. The two former rivals have been cooperating politically for more than a year, despite the bad blood between them.
At a convention at the Tel Aviv Fairgrounds on Sunday, Labor activists voted to delay the next leadership race in the party from May to at least August.
Herzog asked Peretz to delay his press conference until after the convention, so he would not take attention away from the event in which the Labor leader presented his diplomatic plan.