Netanyahu seeks to surmount unexpected obstacles on path to coalition

2015-05-05 18:52
(Image: Ammar Awad, AP)

(Image: Ammar Awad, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Tel Aviv - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu finds himself with a series of unexpected obstacles in government coalition talks on Tuesday, a day ahead of a deadline for him to present a new government.

Economy Minister Naftali Bennett, of the Jewish Home party, has toughened his demands to join Netanyahu's government, aides said on Tuesday. His tougher stance comes after Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman's surprise announcement that his Israel Beiteinu party will not return to a Netanyahu-led coalition.

Netanyahu had counted on Lieberman - until now considered a natural and almost obvious partner - in his plans to form a right-wing, religious coalition with a 67-seat majority in the Israel's 120-seat parliament. 

Now the incumbent depends upon Bennett, without whom he lack a Knesset majority.

Netanyahu's right-wing, nationalist Likud party signed a coalition agreement with the ultra-Orthodox Shas party late on Monday. Last week, he signed on the centre-right Kulanu party as well as the ultra-Orthodox United Torah Judaism Party. 

Together, the four parties have 53 seats. Netanyahu needs Bennett for a slim, 61-seat majority. 

His 42 days for forming the government are up on Wednesday night.

A Jewish Home official said the party was angry that Netanyahu had given an important ministry with control over religious institutions to Shas. The Jewish Home in response raised several new demands, said the official. 

Exceeding predictions, Netanyahu's right-wing, nationalist Likud won 30 seats in the March 17 election. But Israel's multiparty system makes coalition negotiations highly complex.

Netanyahu still has a decent chance of presenting his fourth government by the Wednesday midnight deadline. But, if he fails, President Reuven Rivlin can appoint the task of forming a government to another lawmaker. That would then likely be Labour Party leader Isaac Herzog.

Read more on:    benjamin netanyahu  |  israel

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.