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Signs of rift in Likud following far-right alliance

Sources in Israel have claimed that anger is spreading within the Likud Party following the Prime Minister's declaration of the electoral alliance between his party and Yisrael Beiteinu, the far-right party led by Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.

A number of activists and prominent figures in Likud have expressed their opposition to the coalition agreement and talked about leaving the party. They warn that the agreement will have a negative impact on Likud's interests, not least because the number of Likud members in the Israeli parliament (Knesset) will be reduced.

Lieberman said that there is no reason for Likud members, including Minister Dan Meridor, to withdraw from their party. "Quite the opposite, in fact," he argued. The Foreign Minister told Hebrew Radio that his party will campaign as part of a joint electoral list with Likud. "The parties will not, however, form a united party but will continue to work separately after the elections."

Likud members will have the opportunity to vote on leader Benjamin Netanyahu's coalition decision in a meeting today (Monday).

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