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Israel: Lapid and Bennett almost informed Rivlin they succeeded in forming government

The rocket fire from the Gaza Strip towards Israel that began on Monday evening has dramatically affected the political moves and contacts for the establishment of a “government of change”.

Channel 13 News reported on Monday evening that Yamina chairman Naftali Bennett and Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid intended to inform President Reuven Rivlin that they had succeeded in forming a government, but did not do so due to the escalation and incidents of violence.

This comes amid reports of significant progress in negotiations with the Labor Party, which may take over the Ministry of Internal Security and the Ministry of Transportation. Progress was also recorded in the contacts with Meretz.

Bennett and Lapid had also planned to meet with Ra’am chairman Mansour Abbas at 4:30 p.m. on Monday afternoon, but he postponed the meeting in light of the riots in the capital.

Abbas also informed Lapid and Bennett that as long as the round of fighting against the Gaza Strip continues, he does not intend to resume negotiations, thus freezing talks until the fighting is over.

According to negotiations so far on the division of ministerial roles, it appears that Bennett will serve as Prime Minister, Lapid as Foreign Minister and Alternate Prime Minister, Blue and White chairman Benny Gantz as Defense Minister and Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman as Finance Minister.

New Hope chairman Gideon Sa’ar is likely to be appointed Minister of Justice, Yamina’s number two Ayelet Shaked will be the Minister of the Interior and Meretz chairman Nitzan Horowitz the Minister of Health.

Hili Tropper may remain in his position as Minister of Culture, Yoav Segalovitz or Omer Bar-Lev will serve in the Ministry of Internal Security, and Yifat Shasha-Biton will be the Minister of Education.

Channel 13 News revealed that on Wednesday of last week, when the Yesh Atid chairman received the mandate to form the government, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu secretly met in his office with Abbas, asking him not to join the Lapid-Bennett bloc, but to stay in the Netanyahu bloc.

The Prime Minister reportedly told Abbas that the “bloc of change” would not last, and that he would eventually succeed in forming a right-wing government.

Source: Arutz Sheva