Likud politicians representing the far-right faction in the party were elected on Sunday to most of the senior positions in the party establishment causing a serious headache for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is trying to prepare the ground for the renewal of the peace process with the Palestinians.
Deputy ministers Danny Danon and Zeev Elkin were voted in respectively as chairs of the party’s central committee and ideological bureau. Both have publicly stated in recent weeks their opposition to a two-state solution.
Former MK Michael Kleiner, who in the past left Likud to head the far-right Herut party, was elected chairman of the party’s internal court
Political observers have interpreted these gains by Likud ideologues to be the result of Mr Netanyahu’s lack of attention to internal party affairs and rumours now abound that he may be planning to split with his own party in a similar fashion to former prime minister Ariel Sharon’s move in 2004.