Shas's Arye Deri, Eli Yishai shake hands 370.
(photo credit: Shas handout)
Shas co-leader Arye Deri said on Tuesday that he was not concerned about which
spot on the party’s electoral list he will be given by the movement’s Council of
Speculation and rumors have circulated in recent days that
Deri was lobbying to gain the No. 1 spot on the list at the expense of
leadership rival and former party chairman Interior Minister Eli
“I didn’t return to Shas after 12 years away in order to get the
No. 1 spot, or to get a ministry or to get anything else,” Deri said during an
interview in the Ynet TV studio. “I came in order to serve the movement and to
serve the public. I will accept whatever the Council of Torah Sages
Deri’s return to the Shas political machine in October was
bitterly opposed by Yishai. A compromise deal to bring him back to the party was
agreed in which a triumvirate leadership consisting of Deri, Yishai and
Construction and Housing Minister Ariel Attias was established, while Yishai
stepped down, temporarily at least, as party chairman, with a final decision on
who will be given permanent chairmanship of the party to be made after the
Shas officials involved in negotiating the deal said at the
time that Yishai would be given the No. 1 spot on the electoral list in return
for compromising and stepping down as chairman.
Speaking to The Jerusalem
on Sunday, a Shas official close to the triumvirate leadership said that
members of the haredi press had exaggerated rumors of discord regarding who
would head the party list during the past few days, and said that no changes had
been made to the joint-leadership deal established back in October.
does not hold a primary election, and the order of candidates on the party list
is chosen by the party’s Council of Torah Sages, which is headed by Shas
spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, along with three other senior Shas
The council is expected to make its final decision on the order
of candidates on the party list this Thursday.