Ultra-Orthodox Shas Party Withdraws Ministers from Israeli Government
Israel's ultra-Orthodox Shas party decided Sunday that its four ministers will leave the government of Prime Minister Ehud Barak, party spokesman Yitzik Sudri told AFP.
"The four ministers will resign today (Sunday) and Shas will vote tomorrow in favor of the censure motion" to be presented against the Barak government by the right-wing opposition, he said.
Shas political leader Eli Yishai told journalists the party had taken the decision because the "red lines," or non-negotiable points, drawn up by Prime Minister Ehud Barak for talks with the Palestinians are "fuzzy" and "unclear."
His party opposes the summit with the Palestinians scheduled to start near Washington Tuesday.
"You cannot support something when you don't know where you are going," he said.
Shas, which has 17 seats in the 120-seat parliament, was the second biggest party in the broad-based coalition, after Barak's own One Israel bloc.
The Shas resignations bring to five the number of ministers leaving the government over the summit issue, following the decision by Interior Minister Nathan Sharansky, of the Russian immigrant party, Israel B'Aliya to step down earlier Sunday – OCCUPIED JERUSALEM (AFP)
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