Coalition Tensions Rise as Netanyahu Engages in Crisis Negotiations

Sep 11, 2023 5:59 pm | Ticker, Virtual Jerusalem

Amid growing political rifts, Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, holds firm to judicial reform compromise while National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir expresses dissent.

In the wake of National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir’s outspoken opposition, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remains firm on pursuing a judicial reform compromise. The PM’s office asserted Tuesday that the PM is resolute in facilitating a compromise that would ensure a harmonious balance among Israel’s legislative, judicial, and executive branches.

Ben-Gvir, known for his forthrightness, articulated his reservations, stating, “I am for negotiations but against surrender.” He emphasized that any compromise that seemed like a ‘surrender’ would be detrimental to the nation’s interests and the values of the right-wing ideology. “The reform is pivotal for the State of Israel and for preserving the equilibrium among the three branches. Compromising at the President’s Residence not only devalues half of the populace but also undermines the tenets of the Right.”

Amidst the tensions, Netanyahu’s office emphasized that the Prime Minister is diligently exploring all avenues to achieve a national consensus. “If we can find an accord that ensures a balanced relationship between the branches, it will be pursued to its conclusion,” the office stated.

Opposition leader Benny Gantz earlier today expressed support for the proposed judicial reform compromise. Gantz underscored his party’s stance irrespective of Netanyahu’s motivations. He remarked, “Our priority is to uphold democracy. Netanyahu’s motives are immaterial if there’s a viable solution that safeguards democratic values on offer.”

Furthering the discourse, President Isaac Herzog, who initiated the first phase of the judicial reform dialogue in Jerusalem earlier this year, suggested a compromise framework. This proposal, which became public last week, recommends a milder reasonableness clause amendment coupled with an 18-month moratorium on any new judicial reform legislation. The consensus-driven approach of the President aims to protect the democratic fabric of the nation and minimize political polarization.

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