Peres grants Netanyahu two-week extension

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli President Shimon Peres granted Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu a two-week extension to form a government.

Peres had set Sunday as a final deadline to form a government without the extension, but Netanyahu and the Labor Party have renewed coalition talks, with Labor set to vote on possibly joining the coalition at its convention Tuesday. Netanyahu has stated that he wants Labor chairman Ehud Barak to remain in the position of defense minister.

Meanwhile, Barak is meeting with stiff resistance from several lawmakers in his bid to convince party leaders that Labor should join the government for the good of the party and the country.

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