Danny Danon voting at Likud elections 370.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will not be negatively received at Thursday’s
Likud convention, the first since he was booed at a similar event last year,
hawkish party activists said on Wednesday.
Newly elected Likud central
committee chairman Danny Danon persuaded Netanyahu to attend the event, which
will be held at the Tel Aviv Fairgrounds.
He told the prime minister that
the event would pass quietly, because there were no serious issues on the
agenda, like merging with another party or whether land should be relinquished
in diplomatic negotiations.
“I think the Right will respect the prime
minister, but in a group of 3,600 people, you can never know 100 percent,” Danon
said. “The Likud has colorful people, but Netanyahu wants to be connected to the
party’s grassroots and he knows ignoring them would be wrong. Disputes must be
settled inside the family.”
Danon said the main focus of the event would
be on procedural matters, like preparing for the October municipal elections and
giving the central committee the right to pass changes in the party constitution
without requiring a special majority. But the main focus of the event is
expected to be on how Netanyahu is received by the central
Shevach Stern, who heads the party’s Binyamin branch and
registered thousands of Likudniks from Judea and Samaria, said he believes the
prime minister will be received respectfully.
“We certainly are not
planning anything against him,” Stern said. “We are part of the party and will
Michael Fuah, the director general of MK Moshe
Feiglin’s Manhigut Yehudit
(Jewish Leadership) ideological forum, said he
expected the event to be relaxed and boring, especially for the
“There won’t be anyone with knives in their mouth,” Fuah said.
“This time I don’t think there will be any action, unless the prime minister
surprises us by saying something provocative, which he would only do if he wants
to split the party. I don’t know all the central committee members, but I know
of no one who plans to boo.”
Eli Cornfeld, a central committee member
from Ashkelon who is a Netanyahu critic, warned that even procedural issues that
the general public does not care about could ignite tension inside the
“I am very worried that even yellow cheese could cause a riot,”
Cornfeld said. “We are dealing with serious issues about the future of the
party. I hope the meeting will pass calmly, but people are very angry. I have
told people to behave in a statesmanlike manner, but anything can happen.”