PM Netanyahu calls supportive party leaders into conference

Likud leader prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu called a snap meeting on Thursday of the leaders of the parties supporting him – plus Party Whip Micky Zohar and Knesset Speaker Yariv Levinto discuss the ramifications of opposition leader Yair Lapid’s submission of a majority coalition list to the president on Wednesday night. Yamina lawmaker Nir Aurbach has meanwhile pulled his vote for a new Knesset Speaker, leaving the Lapid-Bennet lineup without a majority.
The coalition deal is fraying at two additional points on the way to Knesset endorsement and swearing-in: Far-left Meretz’s demand for benefits for the gay community is opposed by the Arab Raam party leader Mansour Abbas, who is destined to be the first Arab Muslim lawmaker to be integrated in an Israeli government coalition. And MK Ze‘ev Elkin of New Hope won’t hear of the United Arab List eking out the government’s majority in the event of more dropouts..

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