Netanyahu's ministerial bid gets boost

Feb. 19, 2009 at 2:25 PM
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JERUSALEM, Feb. 19 (UPI) -- Likud Party head Binyamin Netanyahu, should become the next Israeli prime minister, Yisrael Beiteinu Party leader Avigdor Lieberman said Thursday.

Lieberman, whose political party came in third in Israel's recent parliamentary elections, offered Netanyahu a conditional endorsement in the Likud Party official's bid to follow Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, The New York Times said online Thursday.

Lieberman said he endorsed Netanyahu to Israeli President Shimon Peres on the condition that the Likud Party head create a centrist coalition if tabbed to be prime minister.

The proposed centrist government would include both Lieberman and Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, the head of the Kadima Party.

Livni said since her political party earned the most parliamentary seats in the recent election with 28, she should be in charge of creating coalition positions, the Times reported.

"I have no intention of changing even a fraction of Kadima's path," said Livni, who described her party's goals as "advancing a peace process and fighting terrorism."

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