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    Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during the opening ceremony of the annual Israeli Holocaust Remembrance Day at the Yad Vashem World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Jerusalem, May 1, 2019

    Netanyahu Makes Final Efforts to Form New Govt Ahead of Deadline

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    Middle East
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that he was making final efforts to form a new right-wing government, after receiving an extension to do so from Israeli President Reuven Rivlin in April.

    "I am making final efforts to form a new right-wing government to avoid unnecessary elections", Netanyahu said in a video posted to Twitter.

    Netanyahu failed to finish coalition talks with Israeli right-wing and religious parties within 28 days that he had initially been given by Rivlin on 19 April after Netanyahu's right-wing Likud party won Israel's parliamentary elections on 9 April.

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    He thus requested from the president additional time for negotiations until 29 May.

    On Sunday, with three days left before the deadline, Likud legislator and Netanyahu ally Miki Zohar submitted a bill to dissolve Israel's parliament, which if not passed, gives Rivlin the right to nominate another party leader, presumably Netanyahu's opposition, Benny Ganz, to attempt to form a new government.

    Reportedly, the reason Netanyahu has failed to form a government so far is due to a stalemate between him, his former defense minister, the nationalist Avigdor Liebarman, and Israel's religious parties over a military conscription bill governing exemptions for ultra-Orthodox Jewish seminary students.

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