Report: Netanyahu to serve as health minister

PM Netanyahu expected to serve as health minister as he attempts to persuade Litzman to come back.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Yaakov Litzman
Yaakov Litzman
Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

Health Minister Yaakov Litzman is expected to officially hand in his letter of resignation on Sunday morning, due to the conflict over construction work on Shabbat.

Litzman announced on Friday he would be resigning when no resolution could be found to the issue of construction work during Shabbat on the Israel Railways.

Hahadashot (formerly Channel 2 News) reported on Saturday night that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is expected to serve as health minister for the next few weeks as he tries to persuade Litzman to change his mind and return to his post.

Litzman is expected to make it clear that he is resigning from his position as minister, but not quitting the coalition, and that he intends to continue to vote with the coalition.

Prior to Litzman's resignation, Labor, Welfare, and Social Services Minister Haim Katz (Likud) told Israel Railways to only work on what was absolutely necessary and would be dangerous to work on during high-traffic weekdays.

"After a thorough investigation of the matter, I allowed only essential construction to take place on Shabbat," Katz said. "This construction includes things which, if done on a [busy] weekday, would place lives in danger. My decision reflects the religious community's feelings on the matter, yet at the same time ensures the continuation of regular transportation on Sunday."

Netanyahu responded on Friday afternoon to Litzman’s resignation and said he “very much respects Minister Yaakov Litzman and hopes that he will not resign from the government.”