Netanyahu and Deri
Netanyahu and Deri Flash 90

Shas Chairman Aryeh Deri spoke Saturday night regarding tensions in the current government and inquiries from Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, and others parties, to form an alternative coalition. 

"I made an agreement with Netanyahu that we will do nothing if he decides to dissolve the coalition. We will not establish an alternative. We will only decide what to do after the future election," Deri said, adding, "We were also offered to form an alternative government with Lapid and Herzog." 

"We will only establish a government with someone who will meet my two conditions - raising the minimum wage to 30 shekels and cancellation of VAT on basic commodities," the MK continued. 

Deri also directly addressed Netanyahu, saying, "If you do not dismantle the government now, we are released from the obligation not to form an alternative coalition. 

Finance Minister Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid), Deri's possible alternative, had only bad things to say about Netanyahu, whom he attacked Friday. "The dramatic issues - the state budget, international relations, personal security of citizens, the housing issue - are all stuck in place, yet the Prime Minister is standing on the side." 

"Instead, he is dealing with politics, polls and survival," Lapid accused at a cultural event in Tel Aviv, going on to blame Likud central committee members for convincing the Prime Minister not to accept his budget proposal as well as the 0% VAT law

When asked about a possible overthrow of the government and early elections, Lapid clarified that he was "not afraid, but this is not what the country needs now." 

Regarding speculation that he is attempting to establish an alternative coalition, Lapid claimed: "This is complete nonsense. I'm not trying to set up an alternative coalition. I'm not a complete idiot. I know the hareidi parties will never go with me." 

In response to Lapid, Likud officials were quick to pounce. "There is no border and no shame to the double face of Lapid. On the one hand he talks about new politics, and on the others he deals with old politics in all its ugliness." 

Netanyahu's next step, in regard to dissolving the government, remains uncertain, but associates maintained Saturday night that he is close to making up his mind.