Netanyahu brokers coalition deal to avoid early elections

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

Israel's defence minister said Monday he would remain in the government for now, leaving Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's coalition intact after intensifying speculation over whether the country is headed for early polls.

"This is complete nonsense, it never happened, " Liberman said.

Netanyahu however says that he does not want to do so, calling it unsustainable. Especially, as recent polls show favorable signs of re-election as per polls by Israel's Channel Ten news on Monday.

On Wednesday, Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi, a loyal Netanyahu ally, said "an accurate description would be to say that the prime minister was indifferent to the outcome".

But in a late meeting Sunday, ultra-Orthodox factions told Netanyahu they would agree to support the budget if the military conscription bill passed the ministerial committee and an initial parliamentary reading, postponing a final vote until the summer session.

Diskin said he would not rule out Netanyahu's current government making it to November 2019, "but I would bet against it if I had to risk money". "That was scary huh?" I am glad the color has returned to your faces! "I saved you a great deal of frustration".

The ultra-Orthodox parties demanded the government grant the exemptions.

"If there are elections, we shall take part and we shall win". "All the nerves could have been spared".

"If the prime minister doesn't want elections he won't fire Minister Landver". "We need to remember that the main war isn't between Jews in the Knesset, but with our enemies dispersed along our borders".

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a plenum session in the Israeli parliament, seen with Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon on March 13, 2018. His religious partners say they will not vote for the 2019 budget without the draft exemptions, while a key secular partner vowed to bolt the coalition if the budget was not passed soon. "I definitely have to recognize the efforts of Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked". She reaffirmed, in an interview with Army Radio, that the crisis was "solvable" and said that there is "no real, significant gap in the stances of limiting the scope of ultra-Orthodox enlisted to the army".

Though he has become a responsible cabinet member ("the most adult among them", we hear sometimes) and apparently not a bad minister of defense, the Russian base of his party is shrinking and one of the former members of his parliamentary faction has made a decision to form her own party thus competing with the man who once was her boss.

Lieberman, who has pushed for compulsory military service for ultra-Orthodox men, is expected to address the issue at a party meeting later today.

Military service for ultra-Orthodox men is one of the most fraught topics in Israel and looked to undermine Netanyahu's coalition government, which holds 66 out of the 120 seats in parliament.

Should Lieberman and his party quit, Netanyahu's coalition could in theory continue with a one-seat majority in parliament.

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