Yesh Atid’s condition for joining the next government is that it will not include charedi parties, Attorney David Shomron, a member of Likud –Beiteinu’s negation team, said this evening following a lengthy meeting with representatives of Yair Lapid’s party.
Shomron said “a major portion of the meeting was dedicated to determining what Yesh Atid’s stance is regarding the inclusion of haredi parties in the coalition. We believe the right way to make progress and address the challenges the State of Israel is facing is to establish as broad a coalition as possible. (The Yesh Atid representatives) said that as far as their party is concerned, there is no room for including charedim in the next government.”
The attorney said Likud -Beiteinu will now try to ascertain whether Habayit Hayehudi has also ruled out the possibility of sitting alongside ultra-Orthodox parties in the next government. He said a meeting with representatives from Naftali Bennett’s party has been scheduled for Friday morning.
The leaders of Habayit Hayehudi and Yesh Atid have formed a political alliance that has yet to be broken during the coalition negotiations.
Commenting on the coalition negotiations between the Likud-Beiteinu and Yesh Atid, Shas leader and Knesset Member Aryeh Deri said, “Today it was made clear that behind the supposed care for equal share of the burden stands pure hatred for charedim.”
Likud MK Ze’ev Elkin urged Bennett to join the coalition, saying “the last time an attempt was made to form a rightist government without the charedi parties and with a divided national camp – it ended with the (Gaza) disengagement. We mustn’t repeat past mistakes.”
Yesh Atid said Chairman Lapid expects the negotiations to continue until the last minute. “Netanyahu has yet to decide what kind of government he wants to establish and which policy he wants to promote,” a party member said.
The meeting between Yesh Atid and Likud -Beiteinu also focused on the joint Yesh Atid-Habayit Hayehudi plan for equal share of the burden, according to which charedim will be drafted to the IDF by the age of 21 and some 1,500 would be given draft exemptions.