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Shaked says it is time for someone to replace Netanyahu as leader of the right

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

Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked speaks at the Israel Bar Association conference in Tel Aviv, September 5, 2022. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)
Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked speaks at the Israel Bar Association conference in Tel Aviv, September 5, 2022. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

Ayelet Shaked says “it is time” for a different politician to succeed former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu as leader of the right.

“The time has come to replace Netanyahu in leading the right,” says the Zionist Spirit party chief at the Israel Bar Association’s Legal Conference. “He shook hands with Arafat, released terrorists and froze the settlements. After failing to form a government so many times, it is only right that he vacate his seat.”

She adds: “But I don’t choose the Likud leader. Likud voters do.”

The former justice minister also says that she will not join a Netanyahu-led government that promotes the current iteration of the so-called French Law, which bars the indictment of a sitting prime minister.

“I’m against the French Law in its current form. I won’t be part of a government that supports the French Law or stopping the Netanyahu trial,” Shaked says.

Netanyahu is on trial on three separate corruption charges. Likud denies that its pursuit of judicial reform is to help its leader subvert the legal system.

Still, Shaked reaffirms her party’s call for a broad unity government that includes Likud. She also aligns with Likud judicial reform policymaker Yariv Levin by supporting a Knesset law that would enable lawmakers to overcome Supreme Court legislative strikedowns with the support of a simple majority of 61 MKs.

On another looming legal question — the issue of whether or not to split the role of the government’s legal adviser from that of the attorney general, currently filled by the same person — Shaked says she has not yet solidified her opinion.

“It needs discussion,” she says.

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