Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/FLASH90
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and leader of the Israel Beyteinu political party Avigdor Liberman sign an agreement in the Israeli parliament on May 25, 2016, which will bring Israel Beyteinu into the coalition and name Liberman as defense minister.

All agreements were reported to be in place by Wednesday morning and the coalition agreement was signed.

Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman and party member Sofa Landver are to be sworn in as ministers on Monday next week. Liberman will officially take over the Defense Ministry on Tuesday. Landver will become Minister of Aliya and Absorption.


Liberman completed negotiations Tuesday night on pension reform with Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon. Earlier questions that were holding up his agreement to join the government coalition were worked out over the weekend.

The agreement includes a sum of NIS 1.4 billion to be transferred to fund pension reform, half of which was initially demanded by Yisrael Beiteinu. The money is be used to serve all sectors of the population.

The formal coalition agreement now goes for review by Knesset members for a 24-hour period.

The move follows the resignation of Likud defense minister Moshe Ya’alon, who said in a statement on social media that he decided to quit “following the recent conduct” of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and “in light of my lack of faith in him.”

The reference was to Netanyahu’s decision to broaden the government coalition by negotiating with the center-left Zionist Union and with Yisrael Beytenu.

“I am resigning from the government and Knesset and am taking time out from political life,” Ya’alon said at the time, but in less than a week rumors flew that he is planning a comeback, possibly with the creation of a new political party.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.