Kadima Chairman Shaul Mofaz threatened to resign from the unity government, which was established about two months ago, over Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to dissolve the Plesner Committee.
The committee was tasked with drafting an alternative to the Tal Law, which exempted ultra-Orthodox yeshiva students from army service.
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"If the prime minister chooses not to head in this necessary direction, the national unity government will come to the end of its road," Mofaz said Monday.
The Kadima leader and former IDF chief, who has claimed that he joined the coalition to promote universal recruitment, called on the committee to publish it recommendations despite Netanyahu's decision to disband it.
"I reject the PM's announcement and give full backing to the committee for the equal distribution of the burden headed by (MK Yohanan) Plesner," Mofaz said.
"The committee was established as part of the (unity) agreement between Kadima and Likud, so the unilateral dissolution of the committee by Netanyahu does not bind Kadima, which will continue to stand behind its obligation to the public and will demand that the committee publish its recommendations as planned on Wednesday," he said.
The Kadima leader continued to say that the recommendations would serve as the basis for any "moral, historic and effective attempt" to introduce universal recruitment in Israel.
Kadima members were enraged by Netanyahu's decision. One of them said the PM "spat in Mofaz's face. If Netanyahu does not adopt the committee's recommendations, we have to leave the government."
Several politicians said Netanyahu's move was coordinated with the ultra-religious Shas party, whose chairman, Eli Yishai, recently characterized efforts to draft the Ultra-Orthodox as "bloodshed, incest, and idolatry."
"Netanyahu lied," said a source in Kadima. "The PM called Mofaz minutes before his faction meeting and told him that he intends to dissolve the committee. Mofaz stressed that he will not take part in the move and Netanyahu agreed to wait. Ten minutes later, while Mofaz was at the meeting, the announcement came out."
A source in the Prime Minister's Office rejected the claims, saying that "Netanyahu made it clear to Mofaz seven times that the committee has come to the end of the road."
Moran Azulay contributed to this report