MK Smotrich
MK SmotrichFlash 90

Religious Zionism party chairman Bezalel Smotrich responded Thursday to the ultimatum set last night by Otzma Yeudit chairman Itamar Ben-Gvir following a Kan Newspoll showing his party having double the strength of Smotrich's.

"I made, am making and will make every effort to go together in a broad unity and allow everyone to join hands. Itamar is a partner and we will sign" an agreement with him, said Smotrich.

When asked if he would agree to run together with Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked's Zionist Spirit party, he responded: "I will not join Ayelet Shaked in these elections, because I want a right-wing government and she doesn't want that. I want to fix the justice system - and she doesn't."

"My identity card in politics is that I have my word and credibility and I can be trusted. I will not go with people whose word has no value," he added.

Ben-Gvir has demanded that his party receive equal representation in the top ten of a united list. Last night's poll showed Otza Yehudit winning eight Knesset seats compared to just four for the Religious Zionism party. If the two parties ran together, the poll showed them winning ten seats, two less than the twelve they received separately, but without the risk that Smotrich's party would fail to cross the electoral threshold.