To break through the impasse in negotiations for a coalition government, PM Binyamin Netanyahu invited all the prospective partners to personal interviews on Sunday night. The biggest hurdle has been Yisrael Beitenu leader Avigdor Lieberman’s refusal to budge on the military conscription law in the face of adamant resistance from the ultra-religious parties. Netanyahu says he has a recipe for overcoming this hurdle. After first refusing to attend this last-ditch round of talks, Lieberman said at the last minute that he would attend. He added that if the ultra-religious lawmakers accepted his compromise formula for them to absent themselves from voting on the disputed motion, then his door was still open to a coalition deal.
The Supreme Rabbinical Council then convened to review the new situation.
The Wednesday deadline for Netanyahu to put together his fifth government is fast approaching. If he fails, the president is empowered to pass the baton to another lawmaker. If that candidate fails too, the process for a new general election will be set in motion and the current Knesset will dissolve itself less than two months after it was voted in.