Amir Peretz Leaves Labor Party, Joins Livni


amir-peretzAs Israeli parties geared towards submitting their final Knesset lists, MK Amir Peretz announced this morning that he is leaving Labor and joining Tzipi Livni’s Hatnua movement.

Livni said during the joint press conference that “Peretz will prove he can stand up for his beliefs, like he did with the Iron Dome… We are acting on the belief that it is possible to replace this government, and finally bring hope to the citizens of Israel.”

Explaining the reasons behind his decision to leave, Ynet reports that Peretz said that he has been offering Shelly Yachimovich his help and support ever since she was elected as the leader of the Labor Party, but “she always rejected my outstretched hand.”

In his speech, Peretz urged Likud supporters to reconsider their choice ahead of the national elections.

“(Likud voters) know that Likud Beiteinu isn’t leading them anywhere but towards extremism and confrontations with the entire world,” he said, according to the Ynet report. “(…) With your help we won’t allow this historic opportunity to pass us by and will establish a government headed by Livni.”

Peretz, who relinquished his position at the Knesset, is to be replaced in the role by former MK Yoram Marciano. The businessman was the next in line on the Labor list in the previous elections. He is to take over the position until January.

{ Israel News Bureau}