Jerusalem – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reached deals Thursday with two political rivals that will enable him to forge a broad-based, but potentially unstable, coalition government.
After weeks of hard-fought negotiations with the centrist party Yesh Atid and the nationalist Jewish Home, Netanyahu managed to persuade both to join his government with a combination of political promises and coveted ministry appointments.
The agreements were still awaiting final signatures Thursday night, reportedly delayed by discussion of government titles for some players. The deals give Netanyahu a 68-vote majority in Israel’s 120-seat parliament.
That means Netanyahu will secure a third term as Israel’s leader.
The new coalition forced Netanyahu to terminate, at least for now, his longtime alliance with Israel’s ultra-Orthodox parties. They were left out of the government because the other coalition partners want to pass legislation to draft ultra-Orthodox young people into the army for the first time and cut government stipends that many religious families receive.
Gunmen attack bar, fatally wound seven
Cancun, Mexico – Two gunmen burst into a bar in a working class neighborhood in the resort town of Cancun on Thursday and fatally shot seven people, authorities said. Four others were wounded.
The assailants arrived at The Mermaid bar in a poor area far from Cancun’s hotel zone in two cars, Public Safety Secretary Jesus Aiza said. Two gunmen using automatic rifles went inside and began shooting, he said.
Most of the victims belonged to a taxi drivers union, according to Aiza.
Police were trying to determine a motive for the attack.