JERUSALEM (Dec. 28)
Premier Menachem Begin insisted today that he would make no changes in the present structure of his coalition Cabinet. Addressing a meeting of Likud colleagues, he specifically ruled out additional portfolios for the National Religious Party which has become the second largest party in the coalition since the Democratic Movement for Change (DMC) split.
The NRP, with 12 seats in the Knesset, has been demanding additional representation in the Cabinet. It presently controls the Ministries of Interior, Education and Religious Affairs. After the resignation of Transport Minister Meir Amit, the Democratic Movement, formerly DMC, was reduced to two portfolios held by Yigael Yadin who continues to serve as Deputy Premier, and Yisrael Katz who is Minister of Labor and Social Betterment.
Begin said that if the NRP was granted additional seats in the Cabinet the other coalition partners would be similarly enlarged. He said that in any event, he would act first to fill the offices of Transport Minister and Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism which have been vacant for some time.