Transportation Minister Miri Regev lashed out at Defense Minister Benny Gantz in a Yedioth Ahronoth interview that will be published on Thursday, saying he is not ready for the premiership.
"I don't think he is ready to become prime minister. He is simply not ready," said Regev. "Let's see what will happen in a year and a half. We'll see whether he'll learn from the best and come prepared for the role."
The Blue & White chairman is expected to assume the position of prime minister in 18 months as part of a rotation deal with Likud Chairman Benjamin Netanyahu.
Regev also raised old speculations that Iranian intelligence has allegedly hacked a cellphone belonging to Gantz and compromised sensitive data, making him vulnerable to extortion by Israel's enemies.
"You need to ask Defense Minister Benny Gantz whether we have anything to worry about," said Regev.
Regev, who is designated to become foreign minister under Gantz, Is one of the closest people to Netanyahu within the Likud ranks and some in the political system believe the things she said were completely coordinated with Netanyahu in an attempt to create a rift between the two and prevent the rotation deal from materializing in a year and a half.
A Likud official issued a response to Regev's remarks and said that the time for personal attacks is over now that a unity government of Likud and Blue & White has been formed.
“The [election] campaign is over and now’s the time for unity. It’s time to stop the personal attacks from all sides," said the official. "The elections are behind us and the shared goals are ahead of us and we must join hands for the sake of Israel.”
Gantz reportedly cut short a meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu after learning of Regev’s attacks on him, demanding an apology.