Moshe Ya'alon
Moshe Ya'alonFlash 90

After announcing a formal split from Yesh Atid Sunday evening, Telem chair Moshe Ya'alon praised former ally Yair Lapid, asserting they simply didn't have enough to overcome a Netanyahu coalition.

"Lapid is a great guy. Unfortunately, we didn't present an alternative to the current regime. We realized the whole package was weaker than its sum total. In any case, those who feel let down by Blue and White will opt to go with Sa'ar and Bennett - and they're not totally committed to remain out of a Netanyahu-led coalition," said Ya'alon.

Ya'alon explained his decision to leave Adv. Ayman Abu-Raya from his party list. "I checked up on the story released last night, and it turns out they stretched the truth a little. As soon as I realized he had outstanding legal cases on his record, I immediately changed my mind. There won't be people with a checkered past in my party," he said.

Ya’alon said he cut ties with Yesh Atid, which Telem has been aligned with in the Knesset since the breakup of the larger Blue and White alliance, because, "more than half a million voters who backed Blue and White in the last election now say they will support Bennett, Shaked, Smotrich, Sa’ar, and Elkin – people who repeatedly helped bring this corrupt regime to power.”

“Therefore, it is crucial that we create an alternative which the public can rely on. Only then will there be a chance for change," he stated.

Telem, the smallest of the three factions which united on the joint Blue and White ticket in the three previous elections, included two center-right candidates who played prominent roles in its previous Knesset slates: Zvi Hauser and Yoaz Hendel, who broke away from Lapid last year to form the Derech Eretz party, before joining Gideon Sa’ar’s New Hope faction in December.