Early Israel election possible
THE TALKS between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon remain deadlocked over the future of Israel’s new public broadcaster.
While the prime minister is in favour of allowing the current Israel Broadcasting Authority (IBA) to continue operations, Mr Kahlon insists on sticking to the new law under which IBA will be disbanded by the end of next month and the new corporation, Kan, will begin broadcasting on all channels on April 30.
Any changes to the public broadcast law will need the votes of Mr Kahlon’s Kulanu Party, and Likud ministers claim that if he does not budge, Mr Netanyahu is prepared to go for early elections.
A number of compromise solutions have been proposed. The main one, to which both sides initially agreed, was to allow the corporation to begin operations as planned but to pass a media regulation law that would place all public broadcasting under much closer government regulation. This solution, however, was shot down by the attorney general, who ruled that the proposed regulation was unconstitutional.
The leaders of Likud’s five coalition partners have all expressed their opposition to early elections. An adviser to Mr Kahlon said: “Bibi will have to back down. He hasn’t got the votes to disband the Knesset.”