The alliance between Habayit Hayehudi
Chairman Naftali Bennett and Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid
is tightening and two are now working on a joint proposal on equal share of the burden.
This could further complicate Benjamin Netanyahu
's attempts to form a coalition and may force him to choose between Bennett and Lapid and the haredi factions.
The issue is a red line as far as Lapid
are concerned and is the one causing the most difficulty in the coalition negotiations particularly with the haredi parties.
The new proposal will likely see two main demands: universal draft and a fixed exemption quota alongside the integration of haredim into the work force.
Representatives from both parties have spent the past few days working on the proposal and it appears that it shares many guiding principles with Lapid's initial plan. In his original plan, Lapid demanded 400 exemptions in total. The new proposal will likely see 1,500-2,000 exemptions.
Habayit Hayehudi also plans to drop the demand for women's draft assuming that by the age of 18 most haredi girls are married, some with small children.
The negotiation teams of the ruling Likud
party and Naftali Bennett's Habayit Hayehudi faction met Friday morning to discuss a proposal for a way to share the burden of army service by all, drafted on behalf of Likud by Professor Eugene Kandel,
who heads the National Economics Council.
A joint statement released after the meeting the sides have not reached an agreement and the gaps were still wide.
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