Israel could be headed for a break from the “Bibi-regime” as several former allies of longest-serving Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seem to have joined hands with political opponents to form a national-unity government that would not only have political formations from the Left, the Centre and the Right, but may also be supported by an Arab party.
In a dramatic development, a former ally of Netanyahu announced that he intends to form a national-unity government to “stop the craziness” of more elections and continued political deadlock to put “Israel back on track”.
Naftali Bennett, leader of the small hardline Yamina party, who in the past served as Netanyahu’s Chief of Staff and as a minister with various portfolios over the years including defence, made it clear that he was going to negotiate a coalition deal with opposition leader Yair Lapid, given that there was no possibility of a right-wing government.’
Getting unseated from premiership at this juncture would be a huge blow for Netanyahu, popularly nicknamed Bibi, as his trial for bribery, fraud and breach of trust picks up steam in Jerusalem’s District Court.
The 71-year-old, who has dominated Israeli politics for a generation, has dismissed the charges as a politically motivated witch-hunt, aimed at toppling his premiership.
As Prime Minister, Netanyahu has been accused of assailing the courts, attorneys-general and police investigators, accusing them of bias. As leader of the Opposition, his ability to maneuver court proceedings would wane significantly.