Danon Vows to Fight Netanyahu's 'Opportunism'

Likud Central Committee chair charges PM of harming party democracy with early primaries, as elections look increasingly likely.

Hezki Baruch, Ari Yashar,

Danny Danon, Binyamin Netanyahu
Danny Danon, Binyamin Netanyahu
Flash 90

Likud Central Committee Chairman MK Danny Danon on Tuesday announced the Committee will not be in session next week, in an act of protest to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu who reportedly is maneuvering for spring Knesset elections.

"I will not let him use underhanded opportunism in elections for the head of the Likud," declared Danon. "I will recommend to the party chairman likely candidates for an appropriate and adequate campaign that respects the ruling party."

Danon continued saying "the Likud movement is at the peak of a process of awakening, and I will not allow the silencing of the movement again and the silencing of its members; I won't let them harm the democracy of Likud, the largest democratic party in Israel."

Netanyahu is currently involved in a push to hold primaries for the head of the Likud movement, in what is charged as being an attempt to use the current political situation to his advantage in retaking the head of the party. Just this Monday he reportedly canned a controversial conversion bill to gain favor with hareidi parties in maneuvering for early elections in the Knesset as well.

The prime minister's popularity plummeted dramatically in the course of Operation Protective Edge, with polls giving him an 82% approval rating early in the mission, slipping to a paltry 32% after he sealed a ceasefire with the terrorist group Hamas.

Danon and Netanyahu have long been at odds, with the tensions between the two coming to a head in the operation when Netanyahu fired Danon from his post as deputy defense minister, after Danon criticized the prime minister for agreeing to ceasefires - including early on before the terror tunnels were dealt with - and not taking decisive military action.

The MK has been outspoken against Netanyahu, accusing him of splitting Likud. Likewise, Danon last month led the Likud Central Committee in voting to topple Hamas in the next operation - in a meeting that Netanyahu chose to avoid.


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