Thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews have been protesting in Jerusalem against plans to make them perform military service.
Israel’s government wants members of the cloistered community to serve in the armed forces and has been trying to reach a deal before a court-determined deadline on 1 August.
However, ultra-Orthodox leaders say their followers are serving the state with their committment to God in prayer and study.
Military service is a highly emotive subject in Israel, where most men and women start a two or three-year service at the age of 18. Many are subsequently called up for reserve duty into their 40s.
Secular Israelis have long complained that their ultra-Orthodox compatriots have never shared the burden of national defence. The issue has raised tensions across the country with thousands of people rallying recently in opposition to the exemption.
In addition, Kadima, the biggest ally of the ruling Likud faction has stressed its determination to quit the government unless an all-inclusive solution is found.
Latest world news
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu confirms he will step down at AK Party Congress on 22 May
Voting underway across the UK on ‘Super Thursday’
Dilma’s impeachment moves one step closer as commission backs removal
Panama babies born with microcephaly linked to Zika
euronews visits frontline village in Syria
Wires > News
- 14:11 CET Israel says found second Hamas tunnel from Gaza since 2014 war
- 14:03 CET Burundi police say 450 people killed in political violence in past…
- 13:52 CET Truce takes hold in Aleppo but fighting goes on elsewhere in Syria
- 13:39 CET Pakistan girl, 16, ‘burnt alive’ for helping couple to elope
- 13:37 CET Saudi security operation against Islamic State fighters in Mecca -…
- 13:20 CET People die, shooting rages at night, amid spluttering…
- 12:22 CET Israeli general assailed for Nazi comparison on Holocaust memorial…
- 12:11 CET Anguished Republicans wrestle with whether to support Trump