Netanyahu demands 'straight answer' from Liberman on coalition

PM presses Avidgor Liberman to publicly commit to opposing formation of minority government relying on Arab lawmakers.

Hezki Baruch,


Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu challenged former Defense Minister Avidgor Liberman (Yisrael Beytenu) to publicly commit to opposing the formation of a left-wing minority government led by Blue and White which relies on the predominantly Arab Joint List party to remain in power.

In a video statement released Thursday evening, Netanyahu called on Liberman, head of the secular rightist Yisrael Beytenu party, to give a “straight answer” on whether he would help Blue and White form a government which would rely on the tacit support of the Joint List party.

“I really believe that that we don’t need to have another election. We can form a national unity government. But before my meeting with Avidgor Liberman, I want to ask him a simple question, and to get a straight answer,” said Netanyahu.

“Will you and your party vote against the formation of a government which relies on the support – or the tacit support – of MKs from the Arab Joint List, which you condemned as a ‘fifth column’?”

“I want to know the truth. Are you really prepared to endanger Israel’s security with the establishment of a government which relies on [MKs] Ahmed Tibi and Ayman Odeh? No more of these dangerous games. Give me a straight answer – yes or no.”

Netanyahu’s video statement was released after Liberman met with Blue and White chief Benny Gantz Thursday, and ahead of a planned meeting between Liberman and the Prime Minister this coming Sunday.

Gantz, who was tapped by President Reuven Rivlin to form a new government, has less than a week left to complete that task. While he may request an extension from the president, it is unclear if Rivlin will grant the request.

נתניהו לליברמן: תן לי תשובה ברורה, כן או לא?