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Big hurdles to overcome in Bennett-Lapid coalition talks — report

Party leaders Naftali Bennett (left) and Yair Lapid during the swearing-in ceremony of the 24th Knesset, at the Knesset building in Jerusalem, April 6, 2021. (Marc Israel Sellem/Pool)
Party leaders Naftali Bennett (left) and Yair Lapid during the swearing-in ceremony of the 24th Knesset, at the Knesset building in Jerusalem, April 6, 2021. (Marc Israel Sellem/Pool)

While Prime Minister Netanyahu’s chances of forming a government shrink further, the bloc seeking to oust him isn’t close to agreeing on a formula for creating an alternative coalition, with significant hurdles remaining, Channel 13 news reports.

Yesh Atid party leader Yair Lapid is said to be pushing for minister portfolios to be distributed proportionately between parties according to their size, with roughly one minister per three lawmakers.

But Yamina party chief Naftali Bennett opposes that, arguing that it would put the right-wing partners in that government at a disadvantage. He is said to demand control of all the politically sensitive portfolios, such as justice minister, interior minister and culture minister, while Lapid insists on an egalitarian distribution.

The report quotes Yamina sources expressing anger toward Lapid, charging that he isn’t sensitive to Yamina’s concerns.

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