ישיבת סיעה יש עתיד
Yesh Atid chair Yair Lapid
Photo: Amit Shaabi
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Naftali Bennett

Bennett says if Netanyahu fails, he'll work to form 'unity government'

Yamina leader in a press conference accuses PM of dragging Israel into fifth elections, while Netanyahu says Bennett wants to be 'chief of staff with seven seats' and can only do so by forming a government with 'extreme left'

Moran Azulay |
Published: 04.21.21, 22:12
Yamina leader Naftali Bennett said Wednesday if Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fails to form a coalition, he will work to form a "unity government".
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  • Bennett has emerged as a kingmaker following March 23 elections, with his party holding seven seats that could help either bloc to form a new government. Netanyahu is the candidate currently tasked with forming a coalition but appears to lack enough partners.
    2 צפייה בגלריה
    בנימין נתניהו ונפתלי בנט
    בנימין נתניהו ונפתלי בנט
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Naftali Bennett
    (Photo: Kontakt )
    During a televised press conference, Bennett told reporters that Netanyahu is dragging Israel into its fifth elections in just two years.
    "My first priority is to establish a right-wing government," Bennett said. "If, however, Likud fails in its mission, I will work to form a national unity government. My condition is that there will be a good, stable and functioning government that can uphold my values, my principles and my national worldview," he added.
    "I do not know if it is possible, but I promise to try my best."
    Netanyahu did not wait too long to reply, issuing a statement where he claimed Bennett has made a deal with Yesh Atid chair Yair Lapid.
    2 צפייה בגלריה
    ישיבת סיעה יש עתיד
    ישיבת סיעה יש עתיד
    Yesh Atid chair Yair Lapid
    (Photo: Amit Shaabi )
    "You are willing to do anything to be prime minister with your seven seats," Netanyahu said, addressing Bennett. "Your only way [to become prime minister] is to head Lapid's left-wing government. You call it a national unity government but it is a transparent attempt to deceive the public.
    "In practice, it will be a government with 50 MKs from the left and the extreme left, together with you as chief of staff with seven seats," he added.
    "I believe the majority of the public wants me as prime minister, it is not guaranteed it will happen, but the chances are very good."
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