MK Benny Gantz, former defense minister and head of the National Unity Party, spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, welcoming the delay in the judicial reform legislation, according to Hebrew media. He urged Netanyahu to keep Defense Minister Yoav Gallant in his position, saying it is "essential for national security" and to promote calm.
Gantz assembled a team to conduct negotiations at President Isaac Herzog's residence. The team will consist of MKs Gideon Sa'ar, Chili Tropper and Orit Farkash-HaCohen of the National Unity Party.
On Sunday, Netanyahu sacked Gallant after he publicly called on him to halt the legislation, saying he "went behind the government's back."
Netanyahu announced on Monday that legislation of the judicial reform would be frozen in order to avert a potential civil war and that he was open to further negotiations regarding the judicial reform, of which the legislation was a key part, The Jerusalem Post previously reported.
Earlier that morning, President Isaac Herzog urged the government to stop the legislation and negotiate with the Opposition "for the sake of our unity and for the future of our children."
Judicial reform sparked national crisis
Netanyahu came to the decision after months of mass protests in Israel and abroad against the reform and after tens of thousands of IDF reservists vowed to stop showing up for duty if the government proceeded with the legislation.
Eliav Breuer, Tal Spungin and Yonah Jeremy Bob contributed to this report.