JERUSALEM, Israel –Israeli President Reuven Rivlin brought Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Benny Gantz together to discuss a unity government, but it might take more than one meeting to bridge the divide between Israel’s two main parties.
President Rivlin arranged the meeting between Gantz and Netanyahu at the president’s residence in Jerusalem. He said they made “significant strides” toward a unity government.
Rivlin wants to avoid a third election and says he wants a broad and stable government.
Best-selling author Joel Rosenberg told Faith Nation a unity government is what Israelis are looking for.
“What we’re heading towards is what we actually need, a national unity government where Benny Gantz, the former IDF Chief of Staff, Israeli military chief of staff, might serve for two years [as prime minister] and then Benjamin Netanyahu serves. The question is which will go first. When you have a deadlock like this that’s what people want, we’re not choosing either or, you’ve got to serve together and there’s a long tradition in that, in the Israeli government in that.”
Yet potential roadblocks to a unity government appeared right after the meeting with Gantz and Netanyahu. Netanyahu told his block of conservative and religious parties he wouldn’t join a government without them while Gantz’s Blue and White party said they will keep their promise not to serve with Netanyahu.
Besides his political challenges, Netanyahu faces legal challenges. Next week his lawyers will present his evidence to Israel’s Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit to refute three separate corruption charges.
Mandelblit announced earlier this year his intent to indict Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on a series of corruption charges. The decision came after more than two years of investigations.