Knesset Speaker Seeking to Mediate Growing Dispute

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Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin is meeting with opposition leaders and MKs in the hope of arbitrating a ceasefire.

Opposition law-makers insist that the coalition parties are breaking the rules of democracy in their conduct pertaining to the biennial state budget and the Economic Arrangements Bill, and this prompted the opposition to walk out of the plenum session en masse on Tuesday. They announced the boycott was being continued today, Wednesday, resulting in a cancelation of the day’s Knesset agenda.

Justifying their unprecedented actions, opposition officials explain that Israel does not have a constitution and therefore, Knesset norms and accepted practices are critical and they must be respected if acceptable rule of government is to continue.

Seeking to further delegitimize the coalition, opposition members pulled private members’ bills, sending a clear message and halting the Knesset’s daily agenda in an abrupt fashion.

Among the more controversial bills that has sparked the internal revolt is the bill dubbed the Mofaz Law, which permits members of a party to break away with seven members instead of one-third of the party, a bill that Kadima officials view as tailored to permit Shaul Mofaz and his supporters to break away and move over to the coalition under a new party umbrella.

(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)