Israeli coalition deal set to be signed
Israeli politicians were set to meet Thursday to iron out the final details of a coalition deal, which would allow Premier Benjamin Netanyahu to present a government six weeks after the elections, and three days before the expiry of a deadline to form a cabinet, dpa reported.
The parties were expected to formally sign the coalition agreement later Thursday, Israel Army Radio reported.
Negotiations, which had been bogged down for days, reached a breakthrough Wednesday night, after the prospective coalition partners agreed to compromise on the allocation of portfolios in the new government.
According to Israeli media reports, the compromise sees the centrist Yesh Atid party of former television anchorman Yair Laipd receive the education portfolio, but drop its demand to also hold the powerful Interior ministry, which will instead go to Netanyahu's Likud-Beteinu alliance.
The pro-settler Jewish Home party, whose leader Naftali Bennet brokered the compromise, will chair the parliament's influential finance committee, in addition to the ministries it will receive.
The government is likely to be presented to parliament, and sworn in, early next week.