In Israel's Ruling Coalition, Discord Grows Over Peace Process With Palestinians

Science and Technology Minister Jacob Perry blasts Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon's comments in Washington, in which he called the Arab Peace Initiative 'a spin.'

The discord within the Israeli government over the Israeli-Palestinian peace process escalated further on Friday, when Science and Technology Minister Jacob Perry criticized Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon over his comments that the Arab Peace Initiative is 'a spin.'

"These kinds of statements move us farther away from the negotiating table," Perry said. "The Arab Peace Initiative, with changes necessary to Israel's security, is one of the main ways It is our duty to seriously consider it, instead of altogether discarding it."

Perry's criticism comes on the backdrop of a number of recent contradictory statements by coalition members regarding the peace process. Last week, Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon said Israel won't accept Palestinian state based on pre-1967 borders. His statements were subsequently blasted by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, who warned against what she called "Danonism" taking over the government.  

Recent disagreements also manifested themselves this week when MK Ofer Shelah (Yesh Atid) argued with Likud's Tzipi Hotovely, after he warned that without progress in peace talks Israel may become another South Africa.

Israel's 33rd government sworn in at the Knesset.
Emil Salman