World

Military draft law brews trouble for Netanyahu’s coalition

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s conservative governing coalition remains on the verge of collapse on Monday after a night of negotiations

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s conservative governing coalition remains on the verge of collapse on Monday after a night of negotiations over legislation to extend military draft exemptions for ultra-Orthodox Jews.

The crisis, which could spark early elections, came after ultra-Orthodox parties said they would not support the 2019 state budget unless the draft exemption legislation is approved.

Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who heads a hawkish secular party, is the leading coalition member against the draft exemptions.

Lieberman has said that he would only support legislation that is drafted by a committee of military officials.

Report says the crisis comes as Netanyahu faces police allegations of bribery and mounting corruption probes.

Opposition politicians and a leading member of the prime minister’s coalition have accused Netanyahu, who is polling strongly of seeking snap elections as a way to bolster his standing in the event of a criminal indictment.

Netanyahu has said he wants elections only at the end of this government’s term, November 2019. (dpa/NAN)

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