The Agudat Yisrael faction in the Haifa municipal council signed a coalition agreement with Mayor-elect Einat Kalish-Rotem. However, a few hours after the signing, Agudat Yisrael representatives were informed that the agreement had been canceled.
Agudat Yisrael was stunned by the move because according to its representatives, it was a long-term negotiation conducted in good faith between the parties.
Sources in Agudat Yisrael accuse their Lithuanian counterparts in Degel Hatorah of having led to the agreement's cancellation for political reasons. Degel Hatorah denies connection.
In response, Agudat Yisrael decided to boycott the first city council meeting that was held this week where coalition members, including the two Degel Hatorah representatives, were presented.
Also with Shas there is weariness. While Agudat Yisrael held negotiations that led to a signing, Shas hasn't begun negotiating.
The haredi vote in Haifa was split in the last election campaign. While Degel Hatorah supported Einat Kalish Rotem, Agudat Yisrael and Shas supported outgoing mayor Yona Yahav.