Benjamin Netanyahu
Benjamin NetanyahuYonatan Sindel/Flash 90

The Likud Party announced on Monday evening that all factions from the right-wing camp submitted the signatures required to replace the Speaker of the Knesset. At the same time, they reported "significant progress in the last few hours towards the formation of a government."

The current Knesset Speaker, MK Mickey Levy, now must make a decision whether to convene a discussion on the issue later this week and put to a vote the appointment of a new Speaker on Wednesday, or to further delay the meeting and hold the vote only in a week – next Monday.

Levy recently said in closed conversations that he intended to delay the appointment of his replacement as part of a trick by the opposition.

On Monday evening, he said in a statement, "A short time ago I received an unusual request from 64 members of the Knesset to place on the agenda a vote to elect a Speaker for the 25th Knesset. Therefore, I have determined that the vote will take place this coming Monday, December 12 at 4:00 p.m. when the Knesset plenum opens."

He further added, "Unfortunately, according to media reports, the unusual request for the election of the Speaker of the Knesset outside of the swearing-in date of the government was intended to promote legislation that would allow people who were convicted and sentenced to probation to serve as ministers.”

“Despite the enormous pain, knowing that this is the intention of the coalition that is being formed, I will act in a statesmanlike manner and respect the will of the voter and the plenum will be convened in accordance with the law and the ruling of the Supreme Court on the matter," said Levy.

Since the missing signatures on the application to replace the Knesset Speaker were those of the MKs from United Torah Judaism, Monday evening’s announcement likely indicates that UTJ and Likud have resolved the issue.