Skip to comments.Labor ministers sign resignation letters (Israeli Knesset to vote on dissolution)
Posted on 11/14/2005 11:24:54 AM PST by anotherview
Nov. 14, 2005 14:29 | Updated Nov. 14, 2005 20:24
Labor ministers sign resignation letters
By SHEERA CLAIRE FRENKEL AND GIL HOFFMAN
Netanyhau and Peretz, future rivals for top post?
Photo: Ariel Jerozolimski [file]
In a move signifying their support for Labor Party head Amir Peretz, all eight Labor Party ministers submitted to Peretz letters of resignation from the government Monday evening as per his request.
In order for the resignations to take effect, the letters must be submitted to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
Peretz, who refused to comment on the resignations, was expected to lead his party out of the coalition next week after his meeting with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, scheduled for Thursday.
Opposition parties agreed on Monday to vote in favor of Wednesdays bill to disperse the Knesset. Opposition leader MK Zevulun Orlev is scheduled to meet with Peretz on Tuesday in an effort to convince him to support the move. The Labor Party head was not expected to accede to Orlev's request.
Left-wing parties expressed approval of the dispersal. MK Abdulmalik Dehamshe (United Arab List) said his party would support the bill since Sharon is not willing to proceed in the peace process."
Opposition Chairman Yosef Lapid (Shinui) said, The governments end has come and the Coalition has run its course.
MK Zvi Hendel (National Union) also supported the move.
Peretz tried in vain to move up his meeting with Sharon in order to discuss an agreed date for elections. Labor leaders later said that the party would stay in the coalition until after the Thursday meeting.
Meanwhile, former finance minister Binyamin Netanyahu joined other ministers in lambasting Peretz late Sunday night, saying that the party's new leader was a real threat to Israel's society and economy.
Speaking at a function of World Likud members in Jerusalem, Netanyahu didn't mince words in his criticism of Peretz, and warned that the Labor leader "will deplete the treasury [and] will strangle the market with policies that surrender to the powerful committees and the monopolies."
Netanyahu, who quit the cabinet in August over his opposition to Israel's disengagement from the Gaza Strip, added that the choice of Peretz was "a true danger to Israeli society and economy. His policies will lead to a dramatic increase in unemployment, will halt growth, and will exacerbate poverty."
Praising his own accomplishments as finance minister, Netanyahu noted: "The policies that we carried out rescued Israel's economy, filled the country's coffers, and allows for real aid to the needy."
I still have trouble untangling parliamentary maneuvers--does this move favor Labor or Likud?
Whether it favors Labor, Likud, Shinui, or someone else is a matter of speculation. What it does do is signal the fact that the end of the current Israeli government is near and that new elections will be held with a few months.
Obviously Amir Peretz thinks he can win such an election and that the move benefits himself and his party. I don't think that is at all the case.
Labor wants to continue to pull out. Sharon's view is to get the "Palestinians" to move to Gaza while Israel retains chunks of the so-called West Bank.
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