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March 3, 2015 7:10 pm

After Congress Speech, Leader of Israel’s Shas Party Pledges Allegiance to Netanyahu

avatar by David Daoud

Israeli politicians at a televised debate. Photo: Channel 2 News.

Aryeh Deri, the leader of Israel’s Sephardic Ultra-Orthodox party, Shas said that they want Benjamin Netanyahu to be the country’s next Prime Minister, Israel’s NRG reported late Tuesday.

Deri said that Shas wants to help Netanyahu create a broad coalition after the upcoming elections in two weeks. He made his statement at a meeting of thousands of Shas activists in the Nokia center in Tel-Aviv.

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“We want Netanyahu to be the Prime Minister,” Deri said. Referring to the Prime Minister’s address to Congress on Tuesday he added, “Netanyahu is representing the people of Israel in the United States against the evil Haman. But where is the Likud of Menachem Begin? For too long, the Likud prefers the family of Lapid.”

Addressing the leader of the center-left Yesh Atid party, Yair Lapid, the Shas Chairman said, “Look at the community we have! And we will not allow you to once again try and harm the disadvantaged, after you have failed once.”

Three weeks ago, Israel’s Ultra-Orthodox parties indicated to Netanyahu that they intend to support him as their candidate for prime minister. In recent weeks, Shas has made other gestures towards Netanyahu, but noted that their support will come with a number of conditions, for example Deri’s social conditions, which include the requirement to increase the minimum wage.

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