JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres easily defeated four no-confidence votes in Parliament on Tuesday and lashed out at hard-liners in his coalition government who oppose Egypt's proposals to revive the Middle East peace process.
In an hourlong speech to the Knesset, Peres also defended the Israeli army raids on Shia Muslim villages in southern Lebanon as self-defense against an escalating guerrilla campaign.
His supporters defeated three of the no-confidence motions by a show of hands and the fourth, on economic issues, by a 50-14 vote. The motions were brought by leftist opposition parties against the coalition of Peres' Labor Party and the right-wing Likud bloc.
Meanwhile, the Foreign Ministry's director general, David Kimche, accused top Lebanese officials of inciting attacks on Israeli forces in southern Lebanon and appealed for international pressure to halt the mounting guerrilla campaign.