Minority Affairs Minister Avishay Braverman demanded
Wednesday that his party, Labor,
give Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
an ultimatum: Either he renews the direct talks with the Palestinians within a month, or Labor quits the coalition.
"Either we save the Labor Party now, or we join Kadima,"
Braverman said during a student gathering. "We have an opportunity to save the party. If my ultimatum proposal is rejected, I will quit the government and fight from the opposition to create a new Labor."
Later Wednesday, associates of Labor Chairman Ehud Barak said party activists and leading field activists approached Barak with a demand to fire Braverman over his remarks.
Braverman also addressed the escalating incitement against Arabs and illegal immigrants. "There is a hatred of foreigners," he said. "The nation is turning into Iran following the rabbis' letter."
The Knesset minister has recently announced his bid for the position of Labor chairman, currently occupied by Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
He will run against Social Affairs Minister Isaac Herzog, as well as other possible contenders like Amram Mitzna and MK Shelly Yachimovich, who are yet to announce their candidacies.
Braverman said on Saturday that "Mitzna is a worthy person, but his 'shopping around' attempts within Meretz and leftists movements raises doubts about his desire and his abilities to head the party that will conquer the center of the political map."