Israel’s Prime Minister announced a coalition deal with former Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, his first step in forming a new government.
Twitter users have been reacting to the appointment made on Tuesday.
Livni, who served as Israel’s foreign minister and chief peace negotiator from 2006-2009, has now been tasked with renewing diplomacy with Palestinians.
Some on social media are questioning the move, “Tzipi Livni, never missing an opportunity to make the wrong decision,” writes a Twitter user.
Livni has been tagged as a moderate voice, especially considering she will now enter a government led by the right-wing Likud party.
Her appointment is surprising, considering her once voracious attacks against Netanyahu.
She announced the formation of her new party, called the Movement, in 2012. Their aim was to oust the hardline Likud party.
The mandate of her movement was to “fight for peace,” stated Livni. Speaking last year, she promised an aggressive push for reconciliation with the Palestinians.
Netanyahu referenced the enmity when he said, “we need to set our differences aside and overcome old rivalries and combine forces for the sake of the country.”
The timing of Netanyahu’s decision to appoint Livni is considered appropriate considering U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit next month on a push to resume peace talks deadlocked since 2010.
In televised remarks, Netanyahu said the union with Livni, a longtime rival, was intended to provide his emerging government with a “wide and stable government that unites the people.”
Netanyahu said Israel had to “make every effort to promote a responsible peace process with the Palestinians,” adding that he hoped for resumption of talks that froze after a dispute over Jewish settlement building, reported Reuters.
Some twitter commenters are less than impressed.
“Livni gives Netanyahu the facade of caring about the peace process without actually threatening to accomplish anything,” says one.
The politician believes she will make a difference however, she has pledged to join the government “because of a strategic and moral imperative to leave no stone unturned, to exhaust any possibility and become a part of any government that commits to bringing peace.”
Without expressly giving a title for her new diplomatic role, Netanyahu said Livni would become a “senior partner in the effort” to revive Middle East diplomacy.
She would also become justice minister, a job Livni has also held previously.
After winning a Jan. 22 election, though short of a majority in parliament, Netanyahu has another month to secure enough coalition partners to control at least half of the legislature's 120 seats so that he can govern.