Israel’s likely next prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has insisted that he would not allow any restrictions on LGBT rights in Israel, amid growing concerns over his coalition deals with far-right partners, including the homophobic Noam party.
As per a deal last week, Noam has been granted control over the education ministry unit responsible for informal education at Israeli schools.
“I just wont accept that. It’s not something I’m saying now – I have a record now and a record in general of having two hands on the wheel […] I ultimately decide policy”, Netanyahu insisted during an interview with NBC.
The interview was one of three Netanyahu has given in recent days to American press, several outlets of which have raised concerns over the social policies of Netanyahu’s hard-right coalition partners.
Netanyahu has not given similar interviews to Israeli press, which has similarly expressed concerns over the possibility for anti-LGBT moves.
Noam’s leader, Avi Moaz, has previously pledged to end female service in the IDF and Jerusalem’s annual Pride parade.
The terms of the deal will give Noam authority over non-official bodies invited to teach or lecture at schools, as well as Moaz running a new national “Jewish identity” government agency as a deputy minister in Netanyahu’s office.