Last-minute coalition agreement saves Israel from early election

The coalition party heads have agreed to compromise in order to resolve the political crisis in the government and avoid an early election. In accordance with the agreement, the bill seeking to secure military service exemptions for young ultra-Orthodox men will pass its preliminary reading this evening even though the Yisrael Beiteinu will vote against it.
Netanyahu and Liberman Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash 90

On Tuesday evening, the heads of the coalition parties reached an agreement that will allow Israel to avoid an early election, ending the days of uncertainty in the political system. According to Israel’s Hadashot news, the agreement states that the preliminary reading for the controversial bill seeking to secure military service exemptions for ultra-Orthodox yeshiva students will be held tonight and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu party will vote against it.

Before the reading, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation will discuss the appeal filed by Yisrael Beiteinu’s Sofa Landver and at the end of the discussion, the committee will vote in favor of allowing each party to vote in accordance with its leader’s decision regarding.  

When the Knesset reassembles after the Passover break, Liberman will have four weeks to submit a state bill regarding the ultra-Orthodox draft. After the bill is approved by the Ministerial Committee for Legislation and passes its first reading, a piece of legislation proposed by a Shas MK regarding the matter will be added to it. The outcome of the merger will be presented to the Knesset for a second and third reading.

Regarding the Nationality Bill, the coalition parties agreed that the vote on its first reading will be held at the end of the 2019 state budget vote and that all coalition MKs will be present and vote in favor of passing the bill.

The agreement also mentions that a stable government is in the nation’s best interest and that all coalition party heads have agreed to work together in order to ensure the government’s long-term survival.

Earlier today, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu separately met with several Israeli ministers to discuss ways to resolve the coalition crisis and prevent an early election. At the end of his discussions with Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon, Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, the framework for the agreement was reached.

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