Ayelet Shaked and Yair Lapid
Ayelet Shaked and Yair Lapid Yonatan Sindel/Flash90

Right-wing ministers in Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's Yamina party responded with fury to Foreign Minister Yair Lapid's (Yesh Atid) statements that he is willing for the coalition to rely on the Joint Arab List to pass laws.

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked (Yamina) emphasized that Lapid's statements were not agreeable to her.

"This statement is not acceptable at all," she said. "I oppose it - and it's a shame it was said."

Religious Affairs Minister Matan Kahana (Yamina) added, "The government will not rely on the Joint Arab List for its existence."

Deputy Minister Abir Kara (Yamina) said, "The Joint Arab List does not exist in my eyes. From my perspective there is no need or desire to base ourselves or coordinate positions with those who obsessively busy themselves with destroying the coexistence in the State of Israel and directly supporting baseless hatred and terror. We have a majority."

He added that former coalition chair MK Idit Silman (Yamina) "this week voted with the coalition to provide aid for the self-employed, and I don't see her voting against interns, emergency rooms, a safety network for the self-employed, or the strengthening of the IDF in my laws. There is a clear majority in the Knesset of 114 MKs, at least."

Earlier this week, Yamina party chairman MK Nir Orbach said, "How does it look when we have to sit and hold discussions with the Joint List in order to get things passed? We can't function like this."

Meanwhile, Construction and Housing Minister Ze'ev Elkin (New Hope) is unwilling to continuously cooperate with the Joint Arab List, but believes that it is sometimes acceptable.

"Unlike Yair Lapid, I do not see any way to form a government which will include the Joint Arab List, and it doesn't matter if it is in the government or the coalition," Elkin said. "This is not because it is an Arab party, but because of the anti-Israel ideology of its MKs. At the same time, the specific cooperation in the Knesset on this legislation or that, or during the passing of the budget, with MKs from all parties including the Joint Arab List, is something that has been routine for many years."

Join our official WhatsApp group