Shas chairman Aryeh Deri expressed his disappointment on Wednesday night over the conduct of Yisrael Beytenu, which led to the dissolution of the 21st Knesset.
"The Prime Minister, with his great wisdom, understood from day one that Liberman does not intend to join the government and that he only wants to gain time and not allow the Prime Minister to form this government," Deri told Arutz Sheva.
He admitted, “I convinced the Prime Minister with great fervor that this is not right and that it is worthwhile to try to negotiate and listen to the demands. We agreed that there will be a special measure in the government for Liberman and a different measure for the other parties, and we will not ask to be equal partners in order to allow him to be a part of it.”
"Today I felt, after all this great effort and all the compromises we made, the need to apologize to the Prime Minister and tell him that I was wrong about this and the Prime Minister was right. Turns out that I did not know Liberman well enough."
Deri revealed that Shas was willing to make far-reaching concessions to Yisrael Beytenu. "After the Prime Minister's proposal this evening and after consulting with Maran Shalom Cohen, we said yes and Liberman refused the offer.”
"I added to the proposal of the prime minister a far-reaching step: That we, the haredim, will not join the government and not receive ministerial positions but will rather support it from outside. Liberman will join and within 60 days a solution will be found to the Draft Law. At most, if no solution is found, we will remain outside and there will be elections. Postpone the elections by two months and give it a chance. That too was rejected,” he added.