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Netanyahu appoints adviser on Russian immigrants to fight Liberman

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appointed an adviser on immigrants from the Former Soviet Union on Wednesday in an effort to woo voters away from former defense minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beytenu party.

Netanyahu said his new adviser, attorney Ariel Bulstein, could advance solutions to key problems faced by Russian-speaking immigrants.

“Immigration from the Former Soviet Union contributed a lot to Israel’s success over the past decades, but there are main issues that require special treatment,” Netanyahu said following a meeting with Bulstein. “Together we will succeed in advancing solutions for pensions, public housing and other issues.”

Liberman mocked the appointment, noting that Netanyahu also appointed an adviser on animals this week. He said Netanyahu only made the appointment after he saw polls predicting that Yisrael Beytenu would win 10 seats.

“This proves the prime minister is under hysterical pressure,” Liberman said. “Maybe tomorrow we will hear he has hired a special adviser on polar bears from the North Pole.”

Netanyahu’s spokesman said Liberman was “delusional” for comparing his own sector to animals and that it was Liberman, not Netanyahu, who is panicking.

Bulstein told KAN news that Yisrael Beytenu had failed to help Russian-speaking immigrants for 20 years and that the Likud received just as many votes from Russian immigrants in the April election as Yisrael Beytenu.

Yisrael Beytenu MK Oded Forer told Army Radio that Netanyahu’s appointment of Culture Minister Miri Regev, who boasts having never read key works of literature, proved that appointments are not his strongsuit.

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