Labor Party Rivals Meet in Wake of WikiLeaks Cable Scandal

According to the cable published by Haaretz earlier in the week, Isaac Herzog described his Labor rival Amir Peretz as 'inexperienced, aggressive and Moroccan.'

Top Labor MK Isaac Herzog and former party head Amir Peretz met on Thursday following Haaretz's publication of racist statements attributed to Herzog regarding Peretz.

After the meeting, Peretz told reporters that he accepted Herzog's clarifications concerning the remarks quoted in U.S. cable leaked by WikiLeaks, adding that he hoped to continue to work toward unity within the Labor Party.

Amir Peretz and Isaac Herzog - Tomer Applebaum
Tomer Applebaum

According to the cable published by Haaretz earlier in the week, Herzog described his Labor rival Peretz as "inexperienced, aggressive and Moroccan," with Labor insiders saying Wednesday that the Haaretz report had once again released the "ethnic demon" in the party.

Many speculated about the damage wrought by the leaked comments to Herzog's chances; the former social affairs minister had been considered a viable candidate in the race for Labor's top spot.

In private discussions on Wednesday, Herzog vowed that the quotations attributed to him will be shown to be inaccurate.

Herzog was embarrassed by the Haaretz report, and was quick to deny the comments attributed to him, in the media.

He claimed that his remarks had been distorted by rivals, for political reasons. He wanted to discuss the matter with Peretz in a telephone conversation - but his attempts to reach Peretz by phone on Wednesday failed.