The leaders of two parties in Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s coalition,
Hatnua and Bayit Yehudi, clashed Monday over Israel’s prospective partners in a
Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennett accused Hatnua
leader Tzipi Livni of seeking a diplomatic agreement even without a partner on
the Palestinian side.
He quoted her saying in a speech, at a conference
sponsored by the economic newspaper Calcalist that, “if there is no Palestinian
partner we must make an agreement with the world.”
Bennett mocked Livni,
saying that her next step would be to decide that “if there is no Palestinian
partner, we will go for an agreement with aliens.”
said she had been misquoted by Bennett.
A source close to her said Livni
was not proposing a deal with the world in lieu of a deal with the Palestinians
but rather saying that the deal she is working on with the Palestinians would
also serve as an agreement with the international community.
negotiating with a Palestinian partner but the deal will also be with the
world,” Livni said according to her associates, “the negotiations are not only
with the Palestinians but with the world, through the United States that is not
only a mediator but also an ally with whom we share mutual
Chiding Bennett and his allies on the Right, Livni said that
they would not see a chance for real peace even if it was right under their
Channel 2 reported that Netanyahu had already started checking
with Bennett where his red lines would be for remaining in the coalition after
an American diplomatic framework is announced.
If Bennett decides to keep
Bayit Yehudi in the coalition, it would help Netanyahu maintain order and
discipline among the ministers and MKs in his own faction.
spokeswoman dismissed the report, saying that Netanyahu himself had no idea what
would be in US Secretary of State John Kerry’s proposal.
“It is way too
early to check how we feel about an egg that has not yet been hatched,” the