Likud sources: If Liberman found guilty, Steinitz to be FM

By GIL STERN STERN HOFFMAN
March 20, 2013 00:52

The title of international affairs minister that the Likud’s Yuval Steinitz received could be a stepping stone to the Foreign Ministry, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu reassured Steinitz this week, Likud sources revealed exclusively to The Jerusalem Post Tuesday.

The sources said that at a marathon meeting with Netanyahu on Sunday, in which Steinitz let Silvan Shalom have the Energy and Water Ministry, Steinitz raised the issue of what would happen if Yisrael Beytenu leader Avigdor Liberman is convicted.Currently, Netanyahu is holding the Foreign Affairs portfolio for Liberman, hoping he will be cleared of corruption charges. A verdict in the Liberman case is expected as early as July.

If Liberman is convicted, multiple Likud ministers will seek the Foreign Ministry, including Steinitz, Gideon Sa’ar, Gilad Erdan, and Shalom, who held the post under former prime minister Ariel Sharon. But Likud sources said Netanyahu’s mind was made up, and he made clear to Steinitz that the job would be his.


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