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Opposition leaders in Knesset say they will boycott final judicial reforms vote

While moving ahead with the first reading and vote on two bills on Monday night, Netanyahu acknowledged the importance of ongoing dialogue

Opposition party leaders Yair Lapid, Benny Gantz, Merav Michaeli and Avigdor Liberman (Photo: Yair Lapid/Twitter)

With upcoming votes to be held on the controversial judicial reforms proposed by Netanyahu and his allies, leaders of four opposition parties in the Knesset said they will refuse to participate in the final vote unless certain conditions are met.

The four parties who stated they would boycott the vote are Yesh Atid, National Unity, Yisrael Beytenu and the Labor party. In a joint statement, the parties said they “will do everything to prevent the passing of the laws, but if God forbid we get to a third reading, we will not be a part of this and boycott the vote in the plenary.”

The parties also stated that unless the Netanyahu-led government stopped moving forward with the proposed reforms, they would refuse to engage in talks with the majority coalition, and would only speak with Israeli President Isaac Herzog. The joint statement affirmed that the “unity of the people begins with real dialogue and, as long as there is no halt to legislation, talks are just a deception.”

While moving ahead on Monday night with the first reading and vote on two bills, Netanyahu acknowledged the importance of ongoing dialogue, saying “the right thing to do is to talk, to try to reach agreements.”

Netanyahu also argued that opposition to the bill has largely been caused by the deception of the “leftist media,” and that Israel is “witnessing an unprecedented attack by biased media channels against the government, fully mobilized to serve opponents of the reform…disseminating fake news 24/7.”

The Times of Israel reports that these first two bills are “expected to easily advance” after their first reading before the Knesset on Monday, after which “the bills will return to committee in preparation for their second and third readings.”

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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