Netanyahu and Lapid.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
In response to reports of attempts by Likud to breakup the ousted finance minister Yair Lapid's Yesh Atid party, the faction confirmed on Thursday that it will continue to operate as a unified body.
Members of remaining coalition parties have reportedly tried to split Yesh Atid in order for some of the party's members to stay in the government in order to avoid elections, Channel 2 reported Thursday.
Days after resigning from the government in the wake of Lapid's dismissal by the Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Yesh Atid blasted the reported attempts to split up the party as a "hysterical and pathetic" attempt to avoid elections.
"The prime minister is panicking. He knows he is going to lose his seat in the next election and is making every effort to prevent them," Yesh Atid said in a statement.
Shortly after the reports emerged Thursday, Netanyahu's office denied the premier's involvement in any attempt to split apart Yesh Atid.
"This is a poor political spin that reflects the panic that grips the failed finance minister Lapid," the Prime Minister's Office said in a statement.
On Tuesday, Netanyhau fired Lapid and Justice Minister Tzipi Livni from the coalition, prompting the remaining four Yesh Atid ministers to resign
Lapid announced on Wednesday night that he was planning to run for prime minister in the upcoming elections set for March 17, 2105.Niv Elis contributed to this report.