Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu is set to ask President Isaac Herzog for an extension to form a government, local media reported on Wednesday.
While Netanyahu has until December 11 to form a coalition government, he is still in talks with some of his partner parties, including leader of far-right Religious Zionism Bezalel Smotrich. Herzog is authorized to give the prime minister-designate an extension of 14 days.
According to the report, Netanyahu will use this period to work out the details of the coalition deals with the future ministers.
He is also seeking to give Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, more time to approve a law that would allow the leader of Shas party Aryeh Deri, who has a criminal conviction for tax offense, to take a ministerial position.
Deri is set to become Israel’s next interior minister. Meanwhile, Smotrich, who aimed to take the defense minister position, is likely to agree to head the Finance Ministry.
The coalition talks between him and Netanyahu are still underway despite Likud and Religious Zionist Party announcing on Tuesday that they are on the verge of sealing the agreement.
Reprinted with permission from i24NEWS.