Israeli PM Netanyahu strikes surprise coalition deal
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has struck a deal with the opposition Kadima party, avoiding the early general election he had sought.
Kadima’s recently-elected leader, Shaul Mofaz, is set to be named deputy PM.
Mr Netanyahu said their new coalition wanted a “responsible” peace process with the Palestinians and “serious” talks about Iran’s nuclear programme.
The move came as parliament debated its dissolution before an election Mr Netanyahu had planned for September.
Kadima is currently the biggest party in the Knesset, but recent polls have suggested the number of seats it holds could be halved.
The coalition will have a majority of 94 - one of the biggest in Israeli history.
President Shimon Peres said the deal was “good for the people of Israel”.
Pictured: The BBC’s Jon Donnison says Mr Netanyahu will “dominate the way that Israeli politics is going”