Talks break down over conscription law that includes haredi Orthodox

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Negotiations between the Kadima and Likud parties over a universal draft bill have broken down, Israeli media are reporting.

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The talks reportedly ended on Tuesday morning and Kadima scheduled a faction meeting for Tuesday evening to discuss its future in the government coalition, according to reports. It appears likely that Kadima will pull out of the coalition, some 70 days after joining it.

Kadima Party head Shaul Mofaz reportedly rejected on Tuesday a compromise offer from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, which would have drafted half of the age appropriate haredi Orthodox men into the military and the other half into national service.

The parties have been meeting to find an alternative to the Tal Law, which grants military exemptions to haredi Orthodox Israeli men.

In February, the Israeli Supreme Court declared the Tal Law to be unconstitutional, and set Aug. 1 as the deadline for a new law to be passed.

Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said Monday that he would extend the Knesset’s current session, and not send lawmakers on summer break as scheduled on July 25, until a conscription law that includes the haredi Orthodox is drafted.

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