Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was recorded in a Likud faction meeting speaking about the party crisis over his decision not to conduct a mass Aliyah mission for the Jews remaining in Ethiopia.
As a justification for canceling the Knesset decision from November calling for the immigration operation for around 9,100 Ethiopian Jews, he claimed, "there is no money because of the security situation."
"You can't have it both ways, every politician wants it both ways," he said in the recordings. "It is so unpopular to say what I say, but I determine that there are things connected to security and they receive priority, that's the issue."
Likud MK Avraham Neguise, himself an immigrant from Ethiopia, began contesting Netanyahu's statements, saying, "is that based on a decision of the government?"
The prime minister raised his tone in response, saying, "the decisions of the government amend themselves in accordance with needs. Say I accepted the decision and I have a war, just as an example. So will we say we won't change the decision? The needs change in accordance with incoming intelligence and security needs."
Army Radio reports that Netanyahu is angry that MKs from his party, such as Neguise and MK David Amsalem, have boycotted all parliamentary votes since being told the government was canceling its November decision.
He criticized them for "making a Shabbat for themselves" by boycotting the Knesset votes, and warned them against "this behavior," which he said caused the collapse of the previous government.
"You can't maintain a coalition with people that make a Shabbat for themselves and I won't go on like this."
"I told certain members of the previous government that it is impossible to maintain a coalition like this," he said, apparently referencing his falling out with MKs Yair Lapid and Tzipi Livni. "They didn't listen to what I said; I ask you to listen well to what I say – it's impossible like this."