Israel’s Netanyahu faces growing threat to lengthy rule

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JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s opponents appear to be moving closer toward a coalition deal that could end the 12-year rule of the longtime Israeli leader. Naftali Bennett, leader of the small Yamina party and a kingmaker following March 23 elections, has scheduled an 8 p.m. news conference. According to Israeli media, he is expected to announce his decision to join a diverse collection of opponents seeking to topple Netanyahu. If he follows through, Bennett, a former Netanyahu aide turned rival, would play a key role in ending the prime-minister’s record-setting term. Israeli media have said that Bennett and the opposition leader, Yair Lapid, will agree on a power-sharing deal in which they rotate the job of prime minister.

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