Political Crisis Brewing in Tel Aviv – Israeli Media

Itamar Ben-Gvir visits the Nafha prison. (Photo: Ben-Gvir TW Page)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

Ben-Gvir’s decision “contradicts the agreement between Gantz’s party and Likud on their entry into the emergency government.”

Israeli media have reportedly exposed a political crisis that may shake the Israeli government, as far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir plans to extend the term of service for some officials in the Israeli security apparatus and dismiss others.

Haaretz reports that Ben-Gvir announced on Tuesday that he would not extend the term of office of Katy Perry, the Israel Prison Service Commissioner. She is scheduled to end her service on January 24, after three years in office. 

The Hebrew website Srugim has said that the political party led by cabinet member Benny Gantz denied reports that circulated on Wednesday evening about an agreement to extend Police Chief Kobi Shabtai’s term and dismiss Perry, according to the Middle-East Monitor (MEMO).

Haaretz further reports that Ben-Gvir’s decision “contradicts the agreement between Gantz’s party and Likud on their entry into the emergency government.”

“Under the agreement, no changes are to be made in senior civil service positions during the war, so any officials whose term ends are supposed to have them extended. Ben-Gvir’s position thus violates that agreement,” reports Haaretz.

Haaretz explains that “the far-right minister does not have the power to make this decision, since it resides solely with the cabinet.”

MEMO further reports that according to Israeli media, officials in Gantz’s party confirmed that they would not allow the replacement of senior officials while the Gaza conflict is ongoing, and demanded that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should act against Ben-Gvir’s decision.

Under the emergency government’s formation agreement, all political appointments were supposed to be delayed, with senior officials remaining in their posts until after the war, the report states.

The officials argued that it harms the state’s work to replace senior officials, especially heads of security agencies, during wartime, the MEMO report continues.

“They added that they had expected Netanyahu to block this damage to state security and not allow decisions based on political considerations in the context of an election campaign,” the report adds.  


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