Netanyahu meeting Barkat on choosing new defense minister to replace Gallant

Carrie Keller-Lynn is a former political and legal correspondent for The Times of Israel

File - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right), and Economy Minister Nir Barkat in the Knesset on February 22, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
File - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (right), and Economy Minister Nir Barkat in the Knesset on February 22, 2023. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is holding meetings with ministers aimed at choosing a new defense minister to replace Yoav Gallant, who he fired over the weekend.

Economy Minister Nir Barkat is currently meeting with Netanyahu.

A spokesman for Barkat says that the minister will accept whatever role the prime minister decides to hand him, amid reports that Barkat is positioning himself for the defense portfolio.

Netanyahu has previously sought to sideline Barkat, a former mayor of Jerusalem and tech tycoon, relegating him to relatively minor roles in the past.

Gallant was fired for calling for a halt to the government’s judicial overhaul legislation.

He has continued to work since then, having not received his official letter of dismissal.

Speaking to troops today, Gallant vows that when it comes to sending soldiers on missions “there was and will be no consideration that is not strictly operational and necessary to the success of the mission.”

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