MK Yair Lapid, second in line to Blue and White leader Benny Gantz, refuses to join any future government headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, even in case Netanyahu's Likud party and Blue and White form a unity government together, sources from within the party said Tuesday.
"Lapid is for unity, but will not sit in Netanyahu's government," the sources told Ynet.
Senior officials involved in unity negotiations between the two parties said that during talks Tuesday evening, Blue and White leader Benny Gantz's representatives announced that they will not serve under a prime minister who has been indicted referring to the corruption cases standing against Netanyahu.
This red line set by Blue and White is meant to prevent Netanyahu from serving first as prime minister in case both parties strike a rotating premiership deal and the prime minister gets indicted in one of his cases.
Another possibility is for Netanyahu to serve first as prime minister and be replaced by Gantz in case he is indicted.
"One thing that came up during the talks between Blue and White and Likud is our unequivocal opposition to any infringement of the rule of law and refusal to sit with a prime minister who has been indicted, just as promised during the election campaign," said the source.
Negotiation teams on behalf of both parties met in Ramat Gan earlier Wednesday, with representatives on both side saying that the main issue at the moment is Likud's insistence on representing the entire right-wing bloc in a future government, while Blue and White are expecting to negotiate without any preconditions.
The Central Election Committee announced Wednesday that Likud gained one seat in the upcoming Knesset, with Likud mustering 32 seats, just one seat less than Gantz and Lapid's Blue and White.