Global News

Israel's Netanyahu in emergency talks amid coalition crisis

Israel's Netanyahu in emergency talks amid coalition crisis

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's right-wing coalition is on the verge of breaking, as one party in the ranks has announced their intention to vote against a compromise bill regarding exempting Orthodox Jewish men from military service.

After coalition talks on Sunday, Netanyahu's office said cabinet ministers were waiting for ultra-Orthodox parties, which control 13 of the government's 66 seats in the 120-member parliament, to present a revised formula for the legislation. The government believes it has enough votes to pass the legislation even without Liberman and his party, except that several of Kulanu's 10 lawmakers have said they would not vote for the bill if Liberman does not support it. It requires two more readings before becoming law, but those are likely to take place after the upcoming Knesset recess. "The people of Israel do not need elections, which would go against the electoral interests of Yisrael Beytenu and the personal interests of Avigdor Liberman".

Netanyahu spoke at length of the threat posed by Iran, whom he said wanted to build an empire, starting with the current land corridor of sympathetic governments it has built to the Mediterranean via Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Israel's prime minister held emergency negotiations with key coalition partners on Sunday in hopes of averting a crisis that has threatened to plunge the country into early elections. "Therefore, it is important to continue the partnership between us with a broad government as only it can continue to serve the citizens of Israel", Netanyahu added. "I have the deepest feelings about the United States", Netanyahu said.

But while the ministerial committee for legislation approved the controversial bill, Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman has not said whether he will accept the compromise.

A number of votes must occur before the end of the week to greatly lessen the chances of early elections. A vote can occur as early as Tuesday evening if the committee overrules her appeal.




Recent opinion polls show the long-time leader still enjoys strong public support and his Likud party could win the most seats in new elections, despite the corruption allegations.

Netanyahu separately called on Lieberman and all other coalition partners to remain in the government.

United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal if Germany, France and the United Kingdom do not meet its demands, US President Donald Trump told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during their White House meeting.

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog called on the PM to resign to spare the country of the "endless saga" of the corruption charges that Netanyahu has been embroiled in.

Israeli police have recommended indicting Netanyahu for bribery, fraud and breach of trust in two separate cases and his close associates have been implicated in another case.


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