Report: Kahlon offered Foreign Ministry

Likud ready to construct mega-portfolio for Smotrich.

By
April 23, 2019 14:02
1 minute read.
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon

Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to Kulanu leader Moshe Kahlon on Sunday, according to Channel 13 political correspondent Sefi Ovadia, and offered him to shift from the Finance Ministry to the Foreign Ministry.

Likud negotiating team chairman Yariv Levin would not confirm or deny the report. Outgoing Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Michael Oren, who left Kulanu, questioned the report.

“Just like you would not put someone as defense minister with no background in defense, so too Israel’s foreign relations are vital to its security, and therefore I hope the next foreign minister will be someone with a background in foreign relations,” he said.

Netanyahu will hold a long-awaited meeting on Thursday with Kahlon. They are expected to discuss the possibility of a merger between Likud and Kulanu.

The Likud is prepared to build a “mega-portfolio” for Union of Right-wing Parties co-chairman Bezalel Smotrich out of the Construction and Housing Ministry, in order to keep him out of the more sensitive Justice and Education portfolios, Likud sources said Sunday.

Smotrich rejected the offer before coalition talks with his party even began, saying that only either the Education or Justice Ministry were acceptable to him.


“If [former Meretz leaders] Shulamit Aloni and Yossi Sarid could be education minister, then so can I,” Smotrich said. “My views are much closer to the consensus.”

Coalition talks began Sunday with Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party. While participants said the meeting went well, they also said the negotiations would be long and difficult, due to differences between Yisrael Beytenu and United Torah Judaism on the IDF conscription bill.

The two sides agreed to meet again soon, most likely this week. But UTJ, Shas and URP have refused to negotiate during Passover.

The Likud’s negotiating team includes Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s former chief of staff Natan Eshel, even though Eshel resigned from his post and agreed not to return to the civil service in February 2012 after signing a plea bargain admitting misconduct toward a female staffer.

Meretz leader Tamar Zandberg said Eshel should have been prevented from being on the negotiating team. But deputy Attorney-General Dina Zilber said it was acceptable for him to be on the team.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Baroness Ariane de Rothschild and Adam Montefiore standing in front of the EDR Heritage wines
May 25, 2019
Rothschild Foundation chooses new chairman Miki Kliger

By JERUSALEM POST STAFF