Shimon Peres (archive photo)
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Peres to Rabbi Yosef: I’ll work for Israel, world Jewry as president
During their traditional Passover meeting, Vice premier and Shas party’s spiritual leader discuss possibility President Katsav may have to step down due to allegations of rape
“My job is to care for the State of Israel and Jews around the world, and I will do that from wherever I am,” Vice Premier Shimon Peres said Sunday during his traditional Passover meeting with Rabbi Ovadia Yosef in Jerusalem.


Peres was referring to the possibility that he would be elected to replace President Moshe Katsav, who is currently under investigation over allegations of rape and sexual harassment.


Rabbi Yosef and Peres in Jerusalem (photo: Haim Tzach) 


During the meeting, which was held at Rabbi Yosef’s home, the two also discussed the development of the Negev and Galilee (Peres’ portfolio), the local high-tech industry and the Iranian nuclear threat.


Rabbi Yosef is the spiritual leader of the Shas party, which backed Katsav in his presidential race against Peres.


The next presidential race will be decided in a secret ballot at the Knesset, after Knesset Member Yoel Hasson (Kadima) announced about three weeks ago that he would freeze the "Peres bill" enabling an open presidential ballot.


MK Hasson said that he would continue to promote the bill, but only for the next presidential race. Hasson told Ynet that he made the decision "following the political farce created around it. I refuse to be part of this farce."


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