Outgoing Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (New Right) bid farewell to the ministry and senior justice officials Tuesday at a special gathering featuring Justice Ministry director-general Emi Palmor, Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit, and state prosecutor Shai Nitzan.
During her address at the farewell gathering, Shaked hint at her plans to win a spot in the next Knesset in this September’s elections – and return as Justice Minister.
“It is no secret that I loved working in this ministry, and that I had planned to continue working here, putting all my strength into it for the next four years. I had specific plans for continuing my work, but unfortunately they fell apart,” said Shaked, referring to the New Right’s failure to pass the electoral threshold in this April’s election, leaving her and Education Minister Naftali Bennett out of the 21st Knesset.
“To my replacement – when he will come – I say: you’re getting a ministry that is in very good condition, first-hand from the producer. Take care of it – and I’m not going to hide the fact that I have some personal interest in this request. I definitely plan on coming back here.”
Despite having lost their seats in the Knesset, Shaked and Bennett continued to serve as Justice and Education ministers respectively, after Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu failed to cobble together a new government, leading Israel back to elections.
On Sunday, however, Netanyahu dismissed both Shaked and Bennett, giving them forty-eight hours notification of their termination from his government.
While Shaked has expressed an interest in returning to the Knesset – and resuming her work as Justice Minister – it is unclear if she will be recruited by the Likud, or continue with the New Right party.
The Likud itself has sent mixed signals regarding the possibility of securing Shaked a spot high on its Knesset list.