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Israel

Benjamin Netanyahu has dissolved Israel's war cabinet

Netanyahu dissolved the cabinet following the resignation of Benny Gantz from the coalition government.

ISRAELI OFFICIALS HAVE said that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has dissolved the influential war cabinet that was tasked with steering the war in Gaza.

The war cabinet was dissolved following the departure from the government of Benny Gantz, an opposition legislator who had joined the coalition in the early days of the war.

He had demanded that a small cabinet be formed as a way to sideline far-right legislators in Netanyahu’s government.

Gantz, Netanyahu and defence minister Yoav Gallant were its members and made key decisions together throughout the war.

National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, who are both security cabinet members and opposed to a truce before Hamas is “eliminated”, have put pressure on Netanyahu to add them to the war cabinet.

The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the change with the media, said that going forward Netanyahu would hold smaller forums with some of his government members for sensitive issues.

Gantz, a long-time political rival of Netanyahu’s, joined the government as a show of unity after Hamas’ 7 October attack on southern Israel.

He left the government earlier this month, citing frustration with Netanyahu’s handling of the war.

Critics say Netanyahu’s wartime decision-making has been influenced by ultranationalists in his government who oppose a deal that would bring about a ceasefire in exchange for the release of hostages.

They have voiced support for the “voluntary migration” of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip and reoccupying the territory. Netanyahu denies the accusations and says he has the country’s best interests in mind.

Author
Press Association