President Herzog summons government, opposition for talks on judicial reform

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President Herzog summons government, opposition for talks on judicial reform

Herzog invited working teams representing the government, Yesh Atid and the National Unity Party for a first dialogue meeting.

Israeli president meeting with government and opposition representatives. Credit: Kobi Gideon, GPO.
Israeli president meeting with government and opposition representatives. Credit: Kobi Gideon, GPO.

Israel’s President Isaac Herzog summoned representatives from the government and two opposition parties on Tuesday for a dialogue on judicial reforms. 

Herzog invited the working teams representing the government, Yesh Atid, and the National Unity Party for a first dialogue meeting at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem.

“Later in the week, the President is expected to meet with representatives of the other parties,” statement from the President’s office read.

This comes after Prime Minister Netanyahu announced a halt to the government’s judicial reforms until after the high holidays in Israel. Despite Netanyahu’s decision to halt the reforms, he insisted that they will be implemented one way or another.

Although political experts in Israel have been skeptical about the prospects of any compromise, both Opposition Leader Yair Lapid and National Unity Party leader Benny Gantz welcomed Netanyahu’s decision on Monday.

“Better late than never. No to civil war, no to divisions, yes to agreement and dialogue,” Gantz said.

Lapid sounded slightly more skeptical, but said that “if the legislation really does stop, genuinely and totally, we are ready to start genuine dialogue at the President’s Residence.”

Meanwhile Labor and Yisrael Beitenu accused Netanyahu of deceiving the opposition and the public.

“We’ve said all along, we’ll only accept a full removal of the dangerous coup bills. Netanyahu is not removing them, he’s buying time at the expense of our democracy,” Labour Party leader Merav Michaeli said.

Lieberman said Netanyahu has “no intention of promoting real talks. We will not stop until there is full agreement on equality of burden, the establishment of a constitution and a constitutional court”

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