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      Lieberman: No Split with Likud

      Yisrael Beytenu head denies press reports that his faction will break away from Likud.
      By Gil Ronen
      First Publish: 3/18/2013, 12:57 PM

      Avigdor Lieberman
      Avigdor Lieberman
      Israel news photo: Flash 90

      Yisrael Beytenu head MK Avigdor Lieberman denied on Monday press reports that his faction will break away from Likud, a few months after merging with it.

      "In the past month there have been a record number of inaccurate quotes," Lieberman said in a press conference. "Journalists don't read material and copy from their colleagues."

      "None of the reports about splitting the faction reflects something that is on the agenda. It is possible, but we have not learned the lessons [of the merger and the elections] yet. There are displeased elements on all sides."

      Lieberman made clear that the appointment of Likud MK Ze'ev Elkin as deputy foreign minister was made with his agreement. "Elkin was one of the best coalition chairmen and I have no doubt that he will be a surprise in the Foreign Ministry, too," he said. "He has very high abilities."

      Lieberman said that there is no reason to think that the new coalition will be unstable. "There is a wide common denominator between all of the components of the coalition, in both the social and economic spheres, and we are all on the same wavelength. The first challenge the government faces is the budget. It is true, in the diplomatic sphere there is a difference. But nothing will happen in the Palestinian subject in the next four years. That is my estimate. Anyone who thinks otherwise lives in an illusion."