Israel’s Netanyahu says deal agreed with far-right to form gov’t

Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu said he has secured a deal to form a new government with hardline religious and far-right political partners, which will see him return to power as the head of the most right-wing coalition in Israel’s history.
Following his November 1 election win, Netanyahu secured a mandate to form a government backed by ultra-Orthodox Jewish parties and an extreme-right bloc that ran under the Religious Zionism alliance.
A deadline to conclude coalition talks had been set to expire at midnight on Wednesday.
Minutes before midnight, Netanyahu informed Israel’s President Isaac Herzog by phone that he had “been able to establish a government”, according to a statement from Netanyahu’s office.
It was not immediately clear when the new government would be sworn in. Netanyahu told Herzog he intended to do so “as soon as possible”.

Al Jazeera’s Rob McBride reports from West Jerusalem.

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By editor