In what was described as the “apparently final unity government meeting”, Israeli Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, told the Vice Premier. Shimon Peres, that he will not “allow him to be released from missions he should be doing”, hinting to the possibility that the two should join their forces in new party if and when they resign from the Likud and Labor.
Sharon told Peres that this is considered the first cooperation between the two leaders. He also told him that the main efforts should be focused on the peace process and the development of Israel.
Meanwhile Peres told Sharon that there is no future “for the country without a peace process”, and the absorption of the evacuated settlers.
Also Peres added that Israel should start developing the Negev and the Galilee after the Gaza withdrawal, meaning that these two areas may house future evacuees.
Labor party ministers, who also attended the meetings, told Sharon that their contribution was very significant to the approval of the disengagement plan.
“Without us, there would have been no withdrawal”, Israeli Infrastructures Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer said.
Also, Peres said that he, as a former Prime Minister, believes that the most important process which occurred since Rabin’s assassination was the disengagement.
The Israeli online daily Ynetnews reported on Sunday that Labor and Likud representative have apparently agreed on March 28, 2006 as the date for general elections in Israel.
The Israeli Cabinet held a meeting on Sunday, for the Labor party, this session attended by Peres and seven Labor party members, marked ten months since the first cabinet meeting as part of the coalition of Israel’s 30th government, yet this meeting could be their last.
"We entered the government in time and left in time," Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer said prior to the meeting.
Also, Minister at Sharon’s office Haim Ramon said that he is not disappointed at leaving the government."
"The reality has changed, the Likud is falling apart and Amir Peretz’s election as Labor party head, which has given us hope, leads me to believe we are taking the correct step," he said.
Housing and Construction Minister, Itzhak Herzog, said prior to the meeting that he hopes that he will return to the government as part of the “winning Labor party, headed by Amir Peretz”.