The leaders of the future Israeli opposition pledged to work against the crystallized government led by Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu, while the latter asked his predecessor, the outgoing Yair Lapid, to transfer power to him in an organized manner and stop inciting against his government.
On Monday evening, Lapid, head of the “There is a Future” party, met with defense ministers Benny Gantz (head of the “National Camp” coalition), finance minister Avigdor Lieberman (head of the “Israel Our Home” party), transportation ministers, Merav Michaeli (head of the outgoing Labor Party), and Mansour Abbas, head of the party. “The Consolidated List” and issued a joint statement.
“We will fight together against the dark and anti-democratic government that is taking shape these days and that will tear Israel apart from within,” said the opposition leaders’ statement, carried by the state broadcaster.
When they return to power, they pledged to abolish “all extremist legislation that harms democracy, security, the economy and Israeli society.”
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The opposition accuses the crystallized coalition led by Netanyahu of seeking to pass “racist” laws in the Knesset (parliament), including against homosexuals, and others that consolidate the control of the same coalition over the joints of the state, including security.
On Thursday, December 29, the Israeli Knesset will vote to grant confidence to Netanyahu, 73, and if that happens, he will become prime minister and Lapid head of the opposition.
In order to obtain the confidence of the Knesset, the votes of at least 61 out of 120 members of the Knesset must be mobilized, and the Netanyahu camp has 64 votes that guarantee him obtaining this confidence.
Shortly before the statement of the opposition leaders, Netanyahu called, in a televised clip broadcast on his Twitter account, to stop inciting the Israelis against him, accept the decision of the voters, and hand him over power in an orderly manner.
Netanyahu said: “O Lapid, losing elections is not the end of democracy, it is the essence of democracy, and you refuse to accept the decision of the people, and you incite the public against it and spread countless lies against the elected government.”
Netanyahu added, “What is your next step? Will you send your demonstrators to climb the walls of the Knesset?”
He went on to say, “I invite you to act responsibly, to accept the decision of the people, and to transfer power in an orderly manner, so that we can fix everything you have destroyed in the past year and a half.”
Netanyahu’s words came in response to statements made by Lapid earlier Monday, in which he considered that the formed government is not a complete right-wing government, as the prime minister-designate claims, but rather a “complete government of madness.”
Lapid added in tweets on Twitter, “We have already seen governments established in Israel. What is happening here is not a natural event. What we have is the weakest prime minister ever, and a government in chaos.”
He went on to say, “We have no intention of sitting quietly while the State of Israel is dismantled from within… (This is) an extremist, nationalist and religious government.”
On Thursday, December 29, the Israeli Knesset (Parliament) will vote to grant confidence to the Netanyahu government, according to the official Israeli Broadcasting Authority.
It is noteworthy that Netanyahu held the position of prime minister for the first time between 1996 and 1999, and then for a continuous period of 12 years between 2009 and 2021.