Nov. 15 (UPI) -- Two Israeli Cabinet members said Thursday the country should hold early elections after the resignation of Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, over a cease-fire with Hamas.
Moshe Kahlon, Israel's finance minister, and Interior Minister Aryeh Deri called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to facilitate an early vote. The request comes as their coalition holds its smallest possible parliamentary majority, The Times of Israel reported.
Liberman announced his resignation Wednesday and it was tendered Thursday. The departure of his Yisrael Beytenu Party from Netanyahu's coalition leaves the prime minister with a slim two-seat advantage (61-59) over his opponents in Israeli Parliament.
Liberman wanted Israel to take a strong hand against the Palestinians after about 500 rockets were fired in Gaza earlier this week amid tensions along the border. Some believe the truce amounts to support for terrorists.
Lieberman said this week there's no path to an agreement with Hamas and Israeli forces should deliver "the most severe blow we can" militarily.
An early election would force Netanyahu to defend his cease-fire decisions, something the prime minister was hoping would not become a campaign issue, Haaretz reported Thursday.
If a snap election is called, it would likely happen in early 2019 -- about six months ahead of the scheduled vote.
The latest spike in Gaza violence followed a failed Israeli commando raid into Gaza that killed seven Palestinians and an Israeli civilian, which increased tensions in efforts for peace.
Refugees or descendants of refugees make up about 70 percent of Gaza's population, and a similar proportion depends on humanitarian aid from other countries and relief organizations.