Labor leader Shelly Yacimovich 370.
(photo credit: Artiom Degel)
Labor Party leader Shelly Yacimovich said Thursday that she had rejected the offer to become finance minister in the new coalition, as she would not have been able to implement Labor party principles due to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's rigid stance on economic policies.
Yacimovich also took to her Facebook page to wish the new government good luck, saying that she and the Labor party would represent the opposition proudly.
"We stood by our voters, and I guarantee that will lead to a real opposition that will take care of all Israeli citizens, regardless of religion, race, gender, poverty and wealth," she wrote.
She also promised that Labor would reveal to the public the secrets woven between "those with the greatest power in Israeli society and the government."
Meanwhile, the head of the leftist Meretz party Zahava Gal-On lashed out Thursday at the formulation of the new coalition, claiming that "the settlers have seized the positions of power in the government."
Under the terms of the coalition agreement, which was set to be signed Thursday, Bayit Yehudi's chairman Naftali Bennett will become Vice PM, and other party members, including former settler leader Nissim Slomiansky will take on key governmental positions.
"[The fact that] control of the Trade and Industry, and Housing Ministries and the Knesset Finance Committee are in the hands of Bayit Yehudi, guarantees that the entire economy will be mortgaged for the ongoing profligate financial benefits that the settlers enjoy at the expense of the rest of Israeli society," Gal-On said.
Hadash MK Dov Henin also responded to the final coalition decisions, stressing the importance of creating strong opposition "camps" in order to challenge policies of the "dangerous" new government that has been formed. He suggested
"Camp Democracy" as a potential name for an organization which would stand against the elimination of minority groups.
Henin also wrote that the the coalition is an "alliance forged between the settlers and the wealthy," and refrained from offering any congratulatory remarks. He stated that he had already begun talks with other opposition MKs on the controversial matter of settlements in the West Bank.