Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) shakes hands with Bayit Yehudi chief Naftali Bennett.
(photo credit: TWITTER / TAL SCHNEIDER)
Prime Minister Netanyahu has criticized Blue and White Party leader Benny Gantz for attending funerals of "terrorists."
"The media tries to hide all sorts of things about Gantz," Netanyahu told Likud MKs at briefing on Sunday morning. "No, not what you think. They hide the fact that a year after Operation Protective Edge, Gantz participated in a memorial service for a thousand Hamas terrorists killed in the operation. Look what the media hides on Gantz. It's Left," Netanyahu exclaimed.
Netanyahu has made the claim repeatedly over the past two months, without any clear evidence to support it. The Prime Minister's Office has not responded to a request from The Jerusalem Post
for such information.
The prime minister might be referring to a joint Israeli-Palestinian Remembrance Day
event, but there is no clear confirmation that Gantz ever attended such an event.
Netanyahu continued to urge support of a right-wing government with him as leader, as the best choice for a strong government, despite his pending indictment.
"In the end, the choice is between a weak left-wing government led by Lapid and Gantz, and a strong right-wing Likud government with my leadership," Netanyahu said. "Today we hear that Lapid and Gantz said they would not sit with us, but would sit with [Joint List MK Ahmad] Tibi."
"They will sit with a Tibi government!"
Late on Thursday, Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit announced his intent to indict Netanyahu
for bribery, fraud and breach of trust.
Other right-wing politicians echoed Netanyahu's claim about a right-wing coalition on Sunday.
Either vote for the Right wing in the upcoming elections, or vote for a Palestinian state, Education Minister Naftali Bennett warned voters in a Channel 12 interview.
"I call on the voters not to leave the right-wing bloc. At the end of the elections, either Right or Palestine," Bennett said, as he urged continued support for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "Until a final indictment is presented against Netanyahu, there is nothing to talk about. Join the New Right [Party]."
Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman also expressed his support for the prime minister, despite the impending indictment.
"We will not sit in the government of Gantz in any situation. Likud is the only option,” Liberman told Army Radio on Sunday morning. “I have not read Mandelblit's letter. One must not rush to make statements. Trust the prosecution and the courts to rule out what is correct. At the moment, the prime minister has the presumption of innocence.”
Former Jerusalem mayor Nir Barkat was quoted by Hadashot as saying, "There is a very strong background noise here that unfortunately can confuse right-wing voters. I call on them to vote for an ideal rather than for other reasons. The timing of publication of the attorney-general's decisions is a mistake. "
"I hear voices on the Left criticizing the judicial system," Barkat, a Likud Party member, said. "It is permissible to criticize the judicial system. It is completely legitimate. But this can be done in a formal manner and not in a fervor.
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