Yishai: Shas out when J'lem talks begin

PM promises to update party chairman "immediately" on any concession Israel decides to make.

yishai looking sharp 224 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
yishai looking sharp 224
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Shas will leave Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's coalition when negotiations begin over the future of Jerusalem, Industry, Trade, and Labor Minister Eli Yishai said Wednesday morning. Yishai told Israel Radio that the party would make its move the day that Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Palestinian negotiator Ahmed Qurei sit down to discuss the issue. On Tuesday, Olmert promised Yishai that he would be updated immediately on every concession Israel decides to make in diplomatic negotiations with the Palestinians. Olmert made the commitment in a meeting with Yishai at the Prime Minister's Office that Yishai requested following the departure from the government of Israel Beiteinu leader Avigdor Lieberman. "We will keep Shas and every other coalition partner updated up to the minute, so they can plan their future accordingly," a source in the Prime Minister's Office said. "We made the same promise to Lieberman before he left." Shas officials said following the meeting that Yishai gave Olmert an ultimatum, saying he would leave the government if he was not kept up to date on all progress in the talks between the negotiating teams led by Livni and Qurei. Olmert's associates told the story differently, saying that the prime minister made his commitment to Yishai before he issued a threat.