General Zionists and Mapai to Form New Israel Cabinet

Announcement of the conclusion of an agreement for the entrance of the General Zionist Party into the Israel Cabinet is expected here tonight following the meeting of the central committees of the Mapai and General Zionist Parties to approve negotiations to this effect which have been taking place for the past week or so.

A Mapai leader, who expressed confidence that the negotiations would be approved tonight, said that the agreement provides for: immediate introduction of a law to reform the educational system; decontrol of certain commodities, including raw materials for industry; and change of the election law so that a political party will have to obtain eight percent of the total national vote to receive representation in Parliament.

What still has to be settled is the position of the Progressive Party and the Hapoel Hamizrachi in the coalition government. The electoral reform would eliminate the Progressives from the Knesset, while the General Zionists’ demand for four portfolios, two of which are now held by Mizrachi Laborite leaders, will cause a clash with the Orthodox groups. If the portfolios held by the Mizrachi Laborites were reshuffled the Mizrachi representative. Rabbi Mordecai Nurok, would be eliminated entirely. The Progressives are expected to stay out of the Cabinet rather than support an electoral law which would eliminate them as a Parliamentary factor.

ORTHODOX LABORITES MEET TO CONSIDER NEW POSITION

The central council of Hapoel Hamizrachi, largest religious party in the country, today began meeting here to consider whether it would remain in the government coalition, from which two other Orthodox parties have already withdrawn. The points on which the decision will turn are the government’s attitude toward the educational systems, conscription of Orthodox women and the assignment of jurisdictions to rabbinical juries.

The threatened split in the leftwing Socialist Mapam Party over the Prague trial seems to have been averted, it was reported here today. A closed meeting of the party’s central council has been taking place on this problem for the past few days.

The report said that attempts at reconciling the extremist and moderate factions in the party on a position to be taken publicly on the trial’s proceedings were apparently successful. Dr. Moshe Sneh, leader of the extremist-Hashomer Hatzair group, was said to have suffered in influence in the party under the pressure of the moderate Leachdut Avoda faction, led by former General Jacob Galilli.

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