Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni has ruled out taking her centrist Kadima party into a governing coalition led by the right-wing Benjamin Netanyahu. He has been tasked with forming a new govenment after an election narrowly won by the right as a bloc.
Netanyahu had been trying to persuade Kadima to join a broad coalition. But Livni said they had failed to overcome fundamental differences in their meeting. She added any government led by Netanyahu would not promote real unity.
Netanyahu’s best hope of forging a viable government may now lie with right-wing parties like Yisrael Beitanu, led by Avigdor Lieberman. The Likud leader has until April 3 to complete the task.
Security was the big issue in this months election and the Kadima-led government’s handling of the recent Gaza offensive remains one the greatest sources of division between the main parties. They are also at odds over peacemaking with Palestinians and the future of Israeli settlements in the West Bank.