Lapid Nixes Center-Left Coalition

YERUSHALAYIM -

Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid has unequivocally rejected the suggestion that he might run jointly with the Zionist Camp in the next general election, The Jerusalem Post reported on Monday.

The statement would seem to put to rest the talk among Zionist Camp leaders Isaac Herzog and Tzipi Livni about forming a Center-Left coalition to remove Likud from power.

“We won’t unite with the Left,” Lapid said. “I respect the Left, which founded Israel. We are not part of the Left and we won’t join with the Left. All the ideas about a bloc will not happen. Yesh Atid will try to be the ruling party in the next election. I will try to be elected prime minister.”

Lapid, whose party has been climbing into high double digits in recent polls, did not however exclude a possible venture with Kulanu: “In the Center, of course we will speak and there are talks all the time but it is too soon to say. Until elections are called, it’s just empty talk.”

He said that if elected prime minister, he would seek a deal with the U.S. in which in return for freezing construction outside the Jewish blocs in Yehudah and Shomron, Washington would accept his program to “build like crazy within the blocs.”

Lapid called for a demilitarized Palestinian state, which the IDF could be permitted to enter at any time for security reasons. As for Yerushalayim, he said it should be made clear to the Palestinians that Israelis will not stand for dividing their capital.