Yamina chairman and prime minister-designate Naftali Bennett hit back at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Sunday, after Netanyahu lambasted the incoming national unity government.
Speaking after the first joint meeting of the eight coalition leaders of the incoming government at a Tel Aviv hotel Sunday afternoon, Bennett held a press conference Sunday night declaring that the new government he is slated to head for the next two years will be to the Right of the current Netanyahu-led government.
Bennett called on Netanyahu to let Israel move forward after Netanyahu’s 12 continuous years in office.
The Yamina chairman also vowed that the new national unity government would not be a left-wing government, but would instead be “more right-wing than the present one”.
“I call on Mr. Netanyahu to relax, to release the country and to let it move forward. People have the right to vote for a government which is not let by you. And by the way, this government will be much more right-wing than the present one.”
Bennett went on to allay the fears of political opponents, calling the first change in government in over 12 years as a “normal event”.
“This isn’t a catastrophe, it isn’t a disaster. It is a change in government – a normal event and one which is expected in every democratic country. Israel is not a monarchy. No one has a monopoly on power.”
Turning to Netanyahu’s failed attempt to cobble together a ruling coalition earlier this year, Bennett said Netanyahu had lied when he denied trying to form a government with the support of the United Arab List (Ra’am) chief Mansour Abbas.
“Netanyahu claimed today that he never agreed to form a government which relies on Mansour Abbas. We all know he’s not telling the truth.”
“I was part of the negotiations for the formation of a government led by Netanyahu with the United Arab List, and I know exactly what Netanyahu promised [Abbas]. After all, our negotiations with the United Arab List were based on what the Likud had already promised to give, just that we were a little bit more conservative. This has been documented and I think it’ll be revealed, too.”
Source: Arutz Sheva