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National Union feud ongoing as Tekuma offers ultimatum (JERUSALEM POST) By LAHAV HARKOV 02/21/12)Source: http://www.jpost.com/DiplomacyAndPolitics/Article.aspx?id=258679 JERUSALEM POST JERUSALEM POST Articles-Index-TopPublishers-Index-Top
Arguments about the National Union list for the next Knesset intensified on Monday, with Tekuma party members threatening to establish the list independently if the factionís other MKs do not agree to their proposal.

In a letter to National Union MKs Michael Ben-Ari and Arye Eldad, party chairman Yaíacov Katz and MK Uri Ariel wrote that following ongoing discussions on the factionís list for the 19th Knesset, they have compiled a list of how the candidates of parties within the National Union will be arranged. Katz and Ariel gave the other two MKs a deadline of March 14, before they will see themselves as able to ďconduct themselves independently.Ē

A Tekuma source explained that this does not mean his party intends to split the faction up and run independently.

Rather, as the factionís chairman is from Tekuma, he will choose the order of candidates without input from the National Unionís other parties.

Eldad and Ben-Ariís offices, however, say that they did not receive any letters, hinting that Katz and Ariel prefer to negotiate through the media and not directly. In fact, a National Union source pointed out that the two Tekuma MKs left the building immediately after the ultimatum was publicized.

The two MKs would not comment on the letter, as they did not receive it from Ariel and Katz.

The National Unionís list for the next Knesset will be comprised of three parties: Tekuma, which includes Katz and Ariel; Hatikva, which is led by Eldad; and Our Land of Israel, led by Ben-Ari.

The party plans to run in a joint list with Habayit Hayehudi in the next Knesset, which will alternate between the two factionsí candidates. However, an official agreement cannot be signed until the National Union resolves its current disagreement.

The conflict in the National Union is about the order of its various partiesí candidates within the list. In a possible eight-member list for the next Knesset, Tekuma would have four candidates.

In addition, the Tekuma source reiterated the partyís opposition to holding a primary, saying that the method is corrupting. The other two parties favor it, as a way to attempt to increase their representation in the Knesset. (© 1995-2011, The Jerusalem Post 02/21/12)

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