Shimon Peres, the acting Labor party leader said on Sunday that his party reported recently 120.000 new members.

The statements of Peres came during his speech at the party headquarters in Hatikva, in Tel Aviv. 

‘New candidates for the party membership handed sing-up form on Sunday’, the Israeli Ynetnews reported.

Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, former Defense Minister, showed up at the party headquarters along with a crowd of supporters carrying crates filled with forms of membership; Ben-Eliezer said that he signed up 36.000 new members to the party.

Meanwhile, Peres rejected the idea that internal party elections to elect a new leader, which are scheduled for June 28, should be postponed, saying that this ‘wouldn’t serve the party’.

Also, Peres said that the ‘large numbers of sign-ups indicate that people ‘are tired of the Likud party, unemployed, facing high university tuition in addition to rising social problems’.

Senior labor party officials said that they hired two private firms in order to verify the legitimacy of the new sign-up forms, in an attempt to prevent cheating or false forms.

Still, candidates for the party leadership are having differences regarding the appropriate time to hold the internal elections.

Eldad Yaniv, the Labor Party legal adviser, said that he prepared an opinion arguing that elections cannot be held because the central committee of the party did not authorize them during its last meeting.

Party candidates must agree on this issue within 48 hours, otherwise the party’s elections committee will decide for them.  


The committee is scheduled to meet May 30, and approve the procedure, while senior party members believe that the elections will be postponed “because there is no sufficient time to properly prepare for them”.