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Israel: Likud lawmaker in 'warm meeting' with Ra'am party chief

Ra'am's backing of a Likud government could propel Likud’s leader Benjamin Netanyahu into another term as Prime Minister of Israel

Likud MK Ayoub Kara had a 'warm meeting' with Joint List splitter party Ra'am's leader Mansour Abbas on Saturday, i24 News reported.

Kara thanked Abbas for a 'warm meeting' and went on to plead with fellow right-wingers to differentiate between Ra'am and its former parliamentary allies, the predominantly Arab Joint List.

Kara tweeted: "Friends on the right: There is a difference between the Joint [List] that cut off the Arab public from Israel and the new pragmatic Ra'am that doesn't deny Israel's existence and wants to be a partner in national decisions."

Ra'am's backing of a Likud government could propel Likud's leader Benjamin Netanyahu into another term as Prime Minister of Israel, on the condition right wing parties like Yamina back the alliance.

Kara will not enter the Knesset this time, as he was 41st on the Likud List.

Although apprehensive, Netanyahu has not ruled out parliamentary cooperation with Ra'am, allegedly over fears they could back legislation which would bar him from holding office as he is currently on trial after being indicted on numerous corruption charges, according the Times of Israel.

The final results of the fourth Israeli election in the space of two years saw the Joint List lose seats, going from a record 15 Knesset seats to only six, whereas Ra'am gained four.

It was reported on Thursday that Netanyahu had set up a dedicated task force to search for irregularities or problems with the Joint List vote, as he hopes to have 2,600 votes annulled, meaning Likud would gain a seat.

READ: Israel's Likud divided need for Arab party in government coalition

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