Shaked and Hendel
Shaked and Hendel INN

Yamina chairwoman and Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked gave a statement to the media Wednesday evening together with Derech Eretz chairman and Communications Minister Yoaz Hendel announcing that they would run together in the elections for the 25th Knesset.

According to the agreement between the parties, the Derech Eretz party will receive the 2nd and 4th places on the list for the Knesset.

"The State of Israel has entered a whirlwind in recent years. A foreigner will not understand this," said Minister Shaked. "Political polarization which, like a snowball, has become the number one cause of governmental instability in Israel. Each group is fighting a war of attrition in the name of disqualifying the other side. A victory for one camp means grief and the destruction of the home for the other camp. The upcoming elections are a critical crossroads for the State of Israel. Each of the blocs aspires to form a narrow government that will rely on extremist elements."

"Whatever the outcome of the elections, half the people will feel that their country was stolen from them. If a narrow government is established, it will be unstable and will only increase polarization and drag us into another election cycle. This is not the right thing. Together we will bring an exit from this unprecedented loop that politics has been forced on the Israeli people. I am happy about the cooperation with Derech Eretz under the leadership of Minister Hendel. Yoaz is an excellent minister with much government experience."

"Together we will lead to the establishment of a Zionist unity government that can govern and take care of the very lives of the citizens of Israel. The housing crisis and the cost of living issues don't care about 'yes Bibi' and 'no Bibi'. Only a stable national government will be able to promote the free market in Israel and promote the prosperity of life in the country. I will continue to work to restore the power of elected officials in the face of the legal autocracy that has filled the governmental vacuum in Israel."

"I would like to do some soul-searching towards the public that elected me. I know that many of you have been hurt. A year ago, when the government was formed, we wanted to prevent the madness of a fifth round of elections. We thought that was the right thing at this time for the State of Israel. We believed that it was possible to create a partnership in order to address the needs of all citizens of Israel. We undertook move that contained public and personal risks and opportunities."

Shaked expressed regret that the Ra'am party had so much power in the current government, saying: "A Zionist government cannot rely on an Arab party."

"Only a vote for the Zionist spirit will guarantee a broad national Zionist government. The unity of Israel is the value that is the basis of our existence as a sovereign Jewish state. The only way to address the fundamental problems of Israeli society is if we return to look at the big picture. And the big picture is that we have built this nation to establish a country that will be a light to the nations. A country that would be an object of admiration throughout the whole world."

Minister Yoaz Hendel said, "We are standing here tonight, Ayelet and I, with a great sense of mission to get the State of Israel out of the crazy spiral it is in. Five elections in a short time has only deepened the rift and division in the nation. There are no winners here, only losers. We as a country lose. We Here for the State of Israel to win."

"All my life I have chosen to believe. I defended the country as a soldier and commander in Shayetet 13, in my positions in the security system and as a decision-maker in the government. Everything I did was based on the belief that this is right and should be done. This is the Zionist spirit. This is also the reason why I joined politics. A belief that one can have a positive influence. I made difficult decisions despite threats and paying a heavy political price, for the State of Israel. Today Ayelet and I are creating this partnership out of responsibility for the future of the country. Out of a Zionist spirit. We are firmly opposed to a narrow Netanyahu government in which they will deal only with what is good for him. We are strongly opposed to a narrow government on the left with the Joint List and extremist factors."