Israel to hold snap election on March 17 after coalition crisis: parliament spokesman

Israel is to hold a snap election on March 17, the parliament's spokesman said Wednesday, following a crisis within Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's fractious coalition government. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Israel is to hold a snap election on March 17, the parliament's spokesman said Wednesday, following a crisis within Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's fractious coalition government. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

JERUSALEM (AFP) - Israel is to hold a snap election on March 17, the parliament's spokesman said Wednesday, following a crisis within Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's fractious coalition government.

"After consultations between different parties, it has been decided to hold elections on March 17," Eran Sidis told AFP, adding that the procedure to adopt a law to dissolve parliament would begin on Wednesday.

Netanyahu called for early elections on Tuesday after firing two ministers in his mostly rightwing coalition, accusing them of "acting against the government from within" and hatching a plot to overthrow him.

It would be Israel's second general election in just over two years. With polls showing Netanyahu's Likud party likely to make gains, another rightwing government is expected to emerge under his leadership.