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Jewish Home party to stay in Israeli government

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) listens to Education Minister, Naftali Bennett, during the weekly cabinet meeting on August 30, 2016 at his office in Jerusalem.(File photo / AFP / POOL / ABIR SULTAN / Getty Images)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) listens to Education Minister, Naftali Bennett, during the weekly cabinet meeting on August 30, 2016 at his office in Jerusalem. [File photo /AFP / POOL / ABIR SULTAN / Getty Images]

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett on Monday dropped his threat to withdraw his Jewish Home party from the coalition government, Anadolu Agency reports.

Speaking at a press conference, Bennett said he had decided to “stand by the prime minister’s side,” and not act on his ultimatum to leave the government.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, who is a party member, was present at the conference.

Bennett’s move came one day after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu assumed the defense portfolio after the resignation of Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Bennett had sought to assume the post.

Lieberman had quit the post last week in protest of a ceasefire deal with Palestinian resistance factions in the Gaza Strip.

If Bennett, whose party has eight seats in the Knesset (Israel’s parliament), had withdrawn from the government, Netanyahu would have lost his single-seat majority in the assembly.

READ: Lieberman’s resignation prioritised politics over Israel’s security 

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