Netanyahu gets 2 more weeks to form coalition

3:43 PM, Mar 2, 2013   |    comments
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
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JERUSALEM (AP) - Israeli President Shimon Peres has granted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu another two weeks to form a governing coalition.

Netanyahu indicated in a televised address on Saturday that he has not been able to build a coalition because two major parties are refusing to join his coalition if it includes ultra-Orthodox parties. Jewish Home and Yesh Atid are unwilling to align with ultra-Orthodox parties that oppose ending military draft exemptions for ultra-Orthodox seminary students.

Netanyahu has been struggling to form a coalition since January elections. His bloc won the most parliament seats, but fell short of the majority he needs. Netanyahu met with Peres Saturday after failing to meet the initial deadline.

If Netanyahu can't form a coalition in two weeks, Yesh Atid could be offered the chance to form one.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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