Senior officials close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
believe he will announce early elections no later than October 15 – the opening day of the Knesset's
winter session, Ynet learned Tuesday.
Netanyahu intends of holding the elections sometime between the end of January and the beginning of February, the officials said.
The PM have held meetings with heads of the Coalition parties over the last few days, implying that there is no chance of settling the differences plaguing the 2013 State budget negotiations.
officials close to Netanyahu could not confirm the PM have made a final decision on the matter: "While all signs point to elections, you can never be sure when it comes to Netanyahu," a Likud official said. "In the past, any issue becoming a public discussion proved to be the opposite than predicted. No final decision has been officially announced within the party."
Meanwhile, Netanyahu held meeting with his senior Coalition members, including Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and
Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
Lieberman was later quoted as saying his party will support the budget, however, if there is a need of holding early elections, they must be held as soon as possible.
Netanyahu-Barak meeting was mostly around Barak's recent visit to the US. Officials describe the crisis between the two as "serious," saying Netanyahu was furious of Barak's attempt of convincing the American government he is utterly against an attack in Iran
prior to the presidential elections.
Netanyahu was extremely furious due to the fact that Barak has presented a completely different security sensibility regarding an attack in Iran during government meetings, than the one presented to the US.
Knesset speaker Reuven Rivlin expressed his support in early elections, stressing "the current economic crisis does allow us the privilege of running a country without approving its budget."