Yamina MK Says Will Not Support Unity Government

YERUSHALAYIM -
MK Amichai Chikli. (Olivier Fitousi/Flash90)

Yamina leader Naftali Bennett suffered a setback on Wednesday when a little known MK in his faction announced he would not support the formation of a unity government.

MK Amichai Chikli, who was fifth on the list, wrote to Bennett that he could not back a government with left-wing parties.

Chikli blasted Bennett for breaking promises to form a right-wing government, not to sit in a coalition with Meretz and not to rotate as prime minister with Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid.

In the letter, Chikli said Yamina was part of the national camp and Likud voters were “brothers,” who should not have been abandoned.

On Monday, Bennett told his faction that if any of the MKs opposed a unity government, they should quit.

Sources in Yamina said Chikli would indeed resign from the Knesset. He will be replaced by the next candidate on the list, Shirley Pinto.

Chikli, who was fifth on list, would be the second top candidate to leave. Sderot Mayor Alon Davidi, who was third on the list, left before the Knesset was sworn in.

A Yamina spokesman said that Bennett respected the view of Chikli, which was known beforehand. “Yamina is determined to do everything possible to form a stable, functioning government and to prevent deteriorating into the chaos of a fifth election.”