Liberman calls on coalition lawmakers to oppose Haredi IDF exemption bill: ‘Vote for Israel’s security interests’

Sam Sokol is the Times of Israel's political correspondent. He was previously a reporter for the Jerusalem Post, Jewish Telegraphic Agency and Haaretz. He is the author of "Putin’s Hybrid War and the Jews"

Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman leads a faction meeting at the Knesset in Jerusalem, on May 27, 2024. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman leads a faction meeting at the Knesset in Jerusalem, on May 27, 2024. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman calls on members of Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party to oppose the prime minister’s Haredi enlistment legislation this evening, stating that they need to “vote for Israel’s security interests” rather than those of the coalition.

If eventually approved, the legislation would lower the age of exemption from mandatory service for Haredi Torah students from the current 26 to 21 and “very slowly” increase the rate of ultra-Orthodox conscription.

Liberman also says that he will meet with National Unity chief Benny Gantz, who announced his resignation from the coalition and Netanyahu’s war cabinet yesterday.

The hawkish opposition politician has previously called on Gideon Sa’ar, Yair Lapid and Gantz to set up a “joint war room so that we can topple this government and establish another government.”

Asked if Gantz would now join his “war room,” Liberman answers that he “hopes they will join… in order to work to replace the government.”

Regarding Gantz’s call to hold elections by the end of the year, Liberman asks why so much time is necessary, pointing to France where elections are now slated to be held less than a month after being announced.

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