Bennett Informs Yamina Party Members He’s Joining Lapid in ‘Government of Change’
i24 News – Yamina leader Naftali Bennett on Sunday informed party members that he has decided to join Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid to form a “government of change” and unseat Israel’s longest-serving prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.
The right-wing Yamina said in a statement that it “unanimously supports Bennett in his efforts to form a government and prevent a fifth general election”; however, local media reported that Amichai Chikli, one of Yamina’s seven elected Knesset (Israeli parliament) members, was not in attendance and it is understood that Bennett could not count on his vote to ratify the coalition deal with Lapid.
The “change bloc” government would include elements from both sides of Israel’s political spectrum. A rotating premiership would see Bennett serving as prime minister first until September 2023 followed by Lapid until November 2025.
Lapid, who set out to resolve Israel’s long-brewing coalition crisis, is expected later on Sunday to inform President Reuven Rivlin that he has succeeded in forming a unity government.
While Bennett is prime minister, Lapid would handle the portfolio of foreign minister and alternate prime minister. Incumbent Defense Minister Benny Gantz would hold on to his current position.