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Lieberman Returns to Government

May 27, 2016

by: Edgar Asher

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Avigdor Lieberman, PM Netanyahu, May 2016, Lieberman joins coalition

Lieberman and PM Netanyahu

Friday, 27 May 2016 | Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Yisrael Beitenu party leader Avigdor Lieberman signed a coalition agreement on Wednesday, 25 May, after agreements were reached on Lieberman’s conditions to join the government as defense minister.

The agreement between the two politicians can only be described as an expediency, as Netanyahu needed to enlarge his coalition base in order to remain in power in the medium term. The Knesset [Parliament] still needs to approve the agreement.

There must be raised eyebrows in the defense establishment that Lieberman has been given the defense portfolio. Former defense minister Moshe Ya’alon was a former IDF Chief of Staff who resigned from active politics over ‘disagreements on moral and professional matters with Prime Minister Netanyahu’.

Avigdor Lieberman, 57, came to Israel from Moldova in 1978. He served in the IDF reaching the rank of corporal.  After leaving the army he studied in the Hebrew University and was awarded a BA in international relations and political science.

In 1983 Lieberman was partially responsible for the foundation of the Zionist Forum for Soviet Jewry. In 1988 he started working with Binyamin Netanyahu, and in 1993 when Netanyahu became party leader, Lieberman was appointed Director-General of the Likud party.

When Lieberman’s Yisrael Beitenu party joins the coalition the government will have sixty-six seats in the 120-seat parliament.

Posted on May 27, 2016

Source: (Excerpt of article originally published by Ashernet on 25 May 2016. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today.)

Photo Credit: Ashernet