Several Likud MKs back Gallant’s call to pause overhaul; others urge PM to fire him - The Times of Israel
Mar 26, 2023 1 min, 21 secs
Internal divisions within the ruling Likud party came to the fore on Saturday night in the wake of Defense Minister Yoav Gallant’s call for the government to temporarily halt its judicial overhaul legislation to allow for compromise talks.

Addressing the nation on Saturday night, Gallant broke ranks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, reiterating the need for legal reforms but declaring his support for a temporary stop to the judicial overhaul’s legislative process — which is due to intensify this week with final votes on a highly controversial law handing the coalition complete control over the selection of most judges.

The defense minister, who cited “tangible danger” to state security as a result of the societal rift created by the coalition’s plan, immediately received the express backing of fellow Likud MKs Yuli Edelstein and David Bitan.

Multiple Hebrew media reports Saturday said that a third party member, Agriculture Minister Avi Dichter, had recently spoken with Netanyahu and other Likud MKs and similarly asked them to stop the judicial overhaul bills until after Independence Day.

Powerful Likud figure Haim Bibas, the mayor of Modiin and head of the Federation of Local Authorities, said he supported Gallant’s call to freeze the legislation and enter negotiations, saying the most important thing at this time was “preserving the unity of the nation of Israel and the security of the state.”

Netanyahu said in a speech Thursday night that he would soften parts of the shakeup going forward, but also said it would vote to pass next week the bill to put key Supreme Court appointments, including its presidency, directly in coalition control.



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