JERUSALEM – The right-wing coalition of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Monday plans to dissolve parliament and the country General elections will take place in April, after his government made more than a month was weakened when an important coalition partner resigned.
The departure of Avigdor Liberman as Defense Minister on November 14 left Netanyahu's government marginalized by a majority in the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, with a majority of only one seat.
As the government sought to pass important laws for each of Netanyahu's five coalition partners, questions were also raised about the possibility of a formal indictment of the longtime Israeli leader in at least three criminal cases against him.
On Monday, it was an attempt to pass controversial legislation that would force ultra-Orthodox Jews into the military, eventually leading the 61-member coalition to unanimously agree that this government would no longer survive in the current circumstances can.
A vote is scheduled for Wednesday to dissolve the parliament. If the dissolution is supported by more than half of the Knesset members, a national election will take place on April 9. A full term would have led the government until November 2019.
Netanyahu's ruling Likud party said in a statement, "National and fiscal responsibility, coalition leaders have urged the dissolution of the Knesset and early April elections. "
In the Knesset, Netanyahu said his government has successfully completed four full years in office" Incredible achievements in all areas. "
" We demand a clear mandate from the voters to continue guiding the state of Israel on our path, " He said, "In this way we have done much for the citizens of Israel, and in this way we will do far more for the State of Israel."
Monday's decision to dissolve the government seemed directly related to the state Yair Lapid, chairman of opposition party Yesh Atid and Netanyahu's main challenger, said his group would not support laws aimed at bringing ultra-Orthodox Yeshiva students into the army.
While all Jewish Israelis are 18 years old Serving as a servant, those who study the Torah in recognized yeshivas or religious schools have traditionally been exempted However, the lack of labor in recent years and growing demands for equality have forced the government to reassess the matter and pass new laws that would only exclude the best religious students – a move that the ultra-Orthodox have resisted ,
Satisfying all members of the Netanyahu coalition has proven to be a source of tension over the past year and has threatened to break the government several times.
From the outside, Lapid, advocating new legislation, said that the law had not gone far enough. He suggested that Netanyahu surrender to "the ultra-Orthodox."
Liberman, who was hoping Netanyahu's coalition to back the law despite his resignation last month, said the law in its present form had been "devoured" by agreements between Likud and the ultra-orthodox parties.
After announcing a poll in April, Liberman said it was time to form a new government.
"We have been saying for a whole month that this is a survival government and not a functioning government, and that's why Israel is most concerned about creating a new and stable government," he told journalists. He also said he would join a future coalition only if the issues related to the bill were resolved.
Reuven Hazan, professor of political science at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, said that although Netanyahu appeared to be in a weak position, his fourth term as Israeli head of state would be more or less undisputed Likud party and outside.
"To say that he is weaker does not mean that he will be weaker," said Hazan. "He is a fantastic activist. When it comes to election campaigns, this is his strength. "
The main challenge he faces now is how he will form the next coalition, especially when Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit decides to formally sue Netanyahu.
The Israeli police have done so In three cases, it has already been recommended to prosecute Netanyahu. Case 100 involves allegations that he received gifts of cigars and jewelry from billionaire benefactors. Case 200 concerns alleged illegal business between Netanyahu and Arnon Mozes, publisher of the popular Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth. In Case 400, Netanyahu is accused of easing the business rules for the country's largest telecommunications company in exchange for favorable coverage of him and his wife on a popular news site on the company.
In a statement after Monday's election notice, the Ministry of Justice said that the process of investigating cases related to the Prime Minister would continue as planned.
"Netanyahu must have realized that this is a serious threat, and the last thing he needs in the midst of an election campaign is that the Attorney General prosecute him," Hazan said. "He wants to anticipate this, win and then he can say," Before you decide to prosecute, take note that the Israeli people re-elected me for the fourth time with more seats than ever and you do not overturn the results can be a democratic choice.