Netanyahu, Kahlon trying to resolve crisis

Minister Yariv Levin meets Finance Ministry director in an attempt to end coalition crisis over public broadcaster.

Contact Editor
Hezki Baruch,

Kahlon and Netanyahu
Kahlon and Netanyahu
Marc Israel Sellem/Flash 90

Minister Yariv Levin (Likud) met on Sunday evening with the director of the Finance Minisry, Shai Babad, in an attempt to end the crisis in the coalition over the establishment of the new Israel Public Broadcasting Corporation (IPBC).

The sides reported that the meeting was held in a good atmosphere and a shared desire to resolve the crisis.

The IPBC is to replace the current public broadcaster, the Israel Broadcasting Authority (IBA), as of April 30.

Previously, Netanyahu had promised to support the creation of the IPBC. However, after he listened to IBA employees on Friday, Netanyahu changed his mind and decided to recant his support for the IPBC.

On Saturday, reports said that Netanyahu was willing to go to elections unless Kahlon agrees to cancel the launch of the IPBC.

Earlier on Sunday, Education Minister and Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett told Arutz Sheva, "I think that under no circumstances should we go to elections.”

“We have a right-wing nationalist government and I don’t understand the logic in holding elections over a broadcasting corporation when no one understands at all what this is about. I have been working over the last few days to reach a compromise, and I am convinced that we will find a solution that will address the needs of both the Prime Minister and Moshe Kahlon. With a degree of responsibility and goodwill I have no doubt that this government can sustain itself. We were able to overcome much more difficult situations, and we will find the bridge that will allow the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister to continue running the government,” added Bennett.

Bennett rejected claims by senior Likud members who say that the Jewish Home is flexing its muscles and has a degree of responsibility for the current crisis, saying the crisis over the public broadcaster can be resolved.

“We will not find a better government at this stage, and therefore I am convinced that the solution will be found and I'm working on it around the clock,” he stressed.