Aryeh Deri
Aryeh DeriCredit: TPS/Kobi Richter

The Shas party, headed by Aryeh Deri, rejected the claims made by Yisrael Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Liberman on Sunday afternoon, calling on him to meet his commitment and establish a right-wing government.

Liberman has refused to join the coalition unless the original version of the Draft Law will be supported and blames the haredi parties for the lack of a coalition agreement. The haredi parties have countered that Liberman is not being truthful and they had never agreed to accept the original Draft Law without changes.

"Unfortunately, Lieberman is not being truthful and is using the law as an excuse to topple a right-wing government," Shas said. "We never agreed to pass the draft law without changing a comma or a word."

"Mr. Liberman: We call on you to show responsibility. Even if there are differences of opinion between you and the prime minister, don't drag Israel into civil war. Pull your hands away from the wild incitement against a large community and fulfill your commitment to establish a right-wing government," Shas added.

Earlier on Sunday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu announced plans to advance a bill to dissolve the 21st Knesset – less than two months after it was elected.

Netanyahu made the announcement during a meeting of Likud ministers Sunday afternoon, as talks to form a new coalition government remain at an impasse.

During the meeting Sunday, Netanyahu blamed Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avidgor Liberman for the failure to reach a compromise agreement with haredi lawmakers which would pave the way for a new governing coalition.

“The haredim moved in Liberman’s direction,” said Netanyahu. “We can solve this crisis, but I guess someone doesn’t want to.”

“Liberman is looking for any excuse to topple me. The public will never forgive him if he takes us to elections twice in one year,” Netanyahu continued.

The Prime Minister added that if no compromise can be worked out before the deadline Wednesday, Israel will head to snap elections.

“If there will be no choice, then we’ll pass a law dissolving the Knesset on Wednesday.”

At the same time, the Likud’s negotiating team is continuing its efforts to bring Yisrael Beytenu and the haredi factions to a compromise that would allow both sides to join the new government.

With five seats of the 65 total mandates won by the right-wing – religious bloc in last month’s election, Yisrael Beytenu is essential for Netanyahu to build a working majority government.