Hatnua officials are less than satisfied with Chairwoman Tzipi Livni's decision to join Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and this time the comments come from former minister Haim Ramon, who is considered one of Livni's closest confidants.
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Ramon, who was instrumental in the formation of Hatnua, lamented the decision: "Both Ehud Barak and Shaul Mofaz believed Bibi and thought they could make a real impact as part of his government – and both were disappointed. I can only guess that will happen to Tzipi Livni, too.
"I pray that Linvi is able to change Netanyahu, but I find that hard to believe."
Netanyahu and Livni (Photo: Gil Yohanan)
Ramon refrained, however, from leveling personal criticism at Livni over the move: Speaking with close associates, he said that "the best (political) way is still to pursue replacing Netanyahu… Bibi is the root of all that's wrong here and he has to be replaced. I haven’t given up on that yet."
According to the coalition agreement, published Tuesday, Livni will serve as justice minister and head peace talks with the Palestinians. Netanyahu will supervise over the negotiations, and any draft agreement will require the government's approval.
Livni convened her faction Wednesday to explain the move, which was heavily criticized by many in the political arena: "Today we're all smiles but we still have a lot of work ahead of us. We created a new hope and we have received congratulations from all over the world. That's very important," she said.
Yuval Karni Ynet and Yedioth Ahronoth correspondent
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