Gantz says he wants secular unity coalition

“Our system of government in Israel has permitted minority groups and sectarian parties to force their way on the majority,” Gantz said.

By
September 3, 2019 21:39
1 minute read.
Benny Gantz has awoken from his post-election slumber.

Benny Gantz has awoken from his post-election slumber.. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

In a tactical change, Blue and White leader Benny Gantz announced at a rally of his party in Beersheba on Tuesday that if elected prime minister in the September 17 election, he would form a “liberal unity government” with Likud and without haredi (ultra-Orthodox) parties.

Until now, Gantz had courted the haredi parties, even though the leaders of Shas and United Torah Judaism said they would only join a government led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He had also disagreed with his party’s number two candidate, Yair Lapid, who wanted to attack the haredim. 

Sources in Blue and White said the shift was intended to attract votes from Yisrael Beytenu, who leader Avigdor Liberman has called for such a coalition for two months.

“Our system of government in Israel has permitted minority groups and sectarian parties to force their way on the majority,” Gantz said. “They succeeded because all the prime ministers until now surrendered to their extortion. They formed coalitions that served those groups instead of the general public.”

Gantz said he would invite Zionist parties to his coalition and “not extremists or extortionists.” He said the coalition guidelines would reflect the views of the majority of the public.

Blue and White candidate Gabi Ashkenazi added at the event that the government Blue and White will form would be one that unites, not divides.


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