Likud 'open' to Shaked joining party

Likud MK Miki Zohar lists possible candidates for Israel's next Justice Minister, says PM Netanyahu 'does not intend' to appoint himself.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

MK Miki Zohar
MK Miki Zohar
Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Likud Mk Miki Zohar on Tuesday responded to the rumors regarding who Israel's next Justice Minister might be.

"At no stage and at no time was [United Right MK Bezalel] Smotrich expected to be Justice Minister," Zohar told Army Radio. "Not during coalition negotiations, not now, and not in the next elections."

"The Justice Ministry, in accordance with what we want, will remain in the hands of the Likud, and hopefully in the hands of [outgoing Tourism Minister Yariv] Levin, who is the most suitable for the task. That was our goal the entire time.

"I don't know if Levin will agree to it, and if he refuses, [outgoing Environmental Protection Minister Ze'ev] Elkin and [outgoing Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi] Hotovely are also possible candidates."

Zohar also emphasized that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu "does not intend to serve as Justice Minister or any minister other than Defense Minister. I assume that we will know the identity of the temporary minister soon."

Regarding Netanyahu's decision to fire New Right ministers Ayelet Shaked and Naftali Bennett Zohar said, "Shaked did excellent work in the Justice Ministry. The decision was made because the public did not vote for their party, and since they were not chosen, the Prime Minister did not feel it was right to leave them in office."

Regarding the possibility of Shaked joining the Likud, he said the Likud is open to "anyone who we can bring into the Likud to strengthen the Likud and increase our power - and Shaked is one of them - the Likud aspires to bring. The issue is still relevant. It's worth waiting patiently, the Likud still sees bringing Shaked in as an option."