Amir Peretz and Itzik Shmuli
Amir Peretz and Itzik Shmuli Labor-Gesher spokesperson

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's emissaries were trying to establish a government with 61 MKs without Benny Gantz and the Blue and White party right up until the last minute, Channel 12 News reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, the day before the agreement between Gantz and Netanyahu was signed, the Prime Minister's emissaries delivered tempting proposals to MKs Amir Peretz and Itzik Shmuli of the Labor Party.

Among the proposals that were passed on to Peretz and Shmuli was a proposal to receive five Cabinet ministries - two for them and three for candidates who would come from outside.

Shmuli was offered the Justice Ministry or the Education Ministry while Peretz was offered the Finance Ministry for a period of three years followed by a year as Prime Minister, after Netanyahu's three years in office.

Peretz and Shmuli rejected the proposals outright, forcing Netanyahu to sign with Gantz. Officials in the Likud insist that Netanyahu preferred a unity government, but only wanted to prepare a contingency plan in case the contacts with Blue and White failed.

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