New Right said looking to enlist former UN envoy Prosor
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New Right said looking to enlist former UN envoy Prosor

Former diplomat says he’s ‘not yet decided whether to enter politics’; scandal-plagued ex-general Gal Hirsch also reportedly approached to join new party

Israeli envoy to the UN Ron Prosor addressing the UN Security Council, November 11, 2014. (Courtesy of the Israeli Mission to the UN)
Israeli envoy to the UN Ron Prosor addressing the UN Security Council, November 11, 2014. (Courtesy of the Israeli Mission to the UN)

The New Right party of Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked has reportedly asked a respected former envoy to the United Nations to join its Knesset slate.

According to the Kan public broadcaster, the party spoke recently with Ron Prosor, who has served as Israel’s ambassador to the UN and Britain and was director general of its Foreign Ministry, about joining the party list.

Reached for comment by reporters, Prosor told the Maariv daily, “The coming elections are indeed an opportunity to contribute to the country, but I have not yet decided whether to enter politics.”

New Right, founded on December 29 by the former leaders of the Jewish Home faction, bills itself as a right-wing bridge between religious and secular Jewish voters.

The platform is similar to that of Jewish Home, which has been stagnating in opinion polls after failing to attract support from secular Israelis.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, left, and Education Minister Nafatli Bennett announcing the formation of their New Right party, at a press conference in Tel Aviv on December 29, 2018. (Yossi Zeliger/Flash90)

Some polls have indicated the New Right party will win about 8 seats in the elections, with Jewish Home now struggling to win the 4 seats it would need to clear the Knesset threshold. In the outgoing Knesset, the Bennett-led Jewish Home held 8 seats.

New Right neither confirmed nor denied the report about its reaching out to Prosor, saying, “We’re happy about all the attention we’re getting, but we can’t specifically address each speculation. When the time is right, we will publicize our [Knesset] list.”

According to Kan, retired IDF brigadier general Gal Hirsch was also approached by New Right to join its Knesset slate.

Hirsch announced last week he would enter politics. He did not say which party he would join, but media assessments linked him to a yet-to-be-announced party or the ruling Likud.

Hirsch has faced numerous controversies in recent years linked to his business interests — concerns that torpedoed his nomination for police commissioner in 2015.

Former IDF Brigadier General Gal Hirsch speaks at at the IDC Herzliya. January 2, 2017. (FLASH90)

Police and the Israel Tax Authority are expected to recommend indicting Hirsch on tax evasion, it was reported last week, two days after he announced he would run for Knesset.

Hirsch reacted angrily to the report and called it a “predictable response” to his announcement.

“It appears we are watching a rerun. The same police that three and a half years ago illegally thwarted my candidacy for the role of police commissioner are now even trying to thwart my candidacy for the Knesset through the same improper means and leaks that are completely unsubstantiated,” he said in a statement.

Hirsch claimed police were trying to pin “baseless” tax charges on him in order to justify their initial decision to investigate him.

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