Israel’s Netanyahu defends partnership with far-right party

Israeli prime minister is defending his partnership with a small ultranationalist party despite local and international condemnation.

Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday took to Twitter and called the criticism, which also came from pro-Israel Jewish organizations in the US, as “hypocrisy and double standards.”

Netanyahu is seeking a fourth straight term as premier in Israel’s April election.

Earlier this week, his Likud party formed a partnership with a smaller merged party that includes members of the ‘Jewish Power’ movement.

Jewish Power embraces ideas of late rabbi Meir Kahane, who wanted a Jewish theocracy and advocated forced removal of Palestinians.

In 1997, Washington classified his Kach movement a terrorist group.

Netanyahu accused leftist critics of having once acted “to put extreme Islamists into the Knesset” to weaken the right.

AP

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