Yamina, an Israeli right-wing alliance headed by former Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, formally split into two separate parties yesterday, reported Haaretz.
After the split was confirmed yesterday, two camps now exist: Hayamin Hehadash – led by former ministers Shaked and Naftali Bennett – and a joint faction composed of Habayit Hayehudi and National Union.
The latter includes Education Minister Rafi Peretz and Transportation Minister Bezalel Smotrich, with the two factions reportedly "considering officially uniting as a single party", reported Haaretz.
The paper added that "the split came in spite of a fierce internal disagreement within Yamina over whether it should happen".
MK Moti Yogev (part of the Habayit Hayehudi and National Union alliance) criticised the split: "What the people of Israel need at this moment is a unification of all the forces that it is possible to unite, whether in the government or whether in a religious Zionist party."
Smotrich, meanwhile, "said a few days ago that an immediate merger is needed between his National Union and Habayit Heyehudi."
As noted by Haaretz, "Bennett submitted his request to split to the Knesset committee on Election Day, with the support of Peretz and Smotrich."
"From the beginning, [Yamina] was about a technical bloc and cooperation in the government coalition negotiations," a party source told Haaretz.