Mofaz: Livni was mistaken to attack haredim

Comes after opposition leader attacks haredi leadership for ultra-Orthodox not joining work force, IDF.

May 17, 2010 22:33
1 minute read.
Kadima leader Tzipi Livni (right) and Shaul Mofaz

mofaz livni. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)

Opposition leader Tzipi Livni’s rival in Kadima, MK Shaul Mofaz, has attacked her in an interview with a chain of haredi newspapers, saying that it was wrong of her to adopt an anti-haredi line in recent weeks.

Mofaz’s comments came after a series of speeches and interviews in which Livni attacked the haredi leadership for the ultra-Orthodox not joining the work force and the IDF and for not teaching the core curriculum in their schools. While Livni has stressed that her problem is with haredi politicians and not the public, Mofaz’s associates said she was stigmatizing Kadima as an anti-religious party.

“I think that at least half of Kadima is against the anti-haredi campaign,” Mofaz told the Kav Itonut Datit chain. “I read some of Livni’s statements and I completely disagree with them.”

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Mofaz accused Livni of joining a “political trend” by attacking haredim following well-publicized statements by Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai. His associates blamed the fad on the fear of unannounced would-be politician Yair Lapid, a popular Channel 2 and Yediot Aharonot journalist who is the son of the late Shinui leader Yosef “Tommy” Lapid.

“They think they can get more mandates with a campaign of hatred,” Mofaz said. “I am against spewing hatred against citizens of this country.

“It is a significant mistake to use an anti-haredi campaign for electoral considerations.”

Mofaz has good relations with Shas and takes credit for the formation of the Nahal haredi unit during his time as IDF chief of General Staff.

An expected attack on Livni on the anti-haredi issue did not take place in Monday’s Kadima faction meeting. Kadima MK Ronit Tirosh, who is close to Mofaz, read a list of statistics about haredi education that supported Livni’s recent statements.

Mofaz’s associates said he expected Kadima’s policy on the issue to be dealt with in a serious manner in an upcoming faction meeting.

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