Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was expected to meet with Kadima chairman Shaul Mofaz in continued attempts to resolve the differences between them on finding a replacement for the Tal Law, and mandating civilian and military service for all Israeli citizens.
Ahead of Netanyahu's meetings with Mofaz and other faction heads, Coalition chairman Ze'ev Elkin said that the differences between Kadima and Likud are not that great, saying that neither are opposed to imposing personal sanctions on those who do not perform national or military service.
Speaking with Israel Radio Thursday morning, Elkin asserted that a solution could be found if Netanyahu makes clear to the ultra-Orthodox (haredi) political leadership that if no solution is found by August 1, Israel's military draft law will be applied equally across all sectors.
Elkin lamenting the lack of progress on the matter, calling it "a shame that instead of addressing the content, we've been dealing with the process," discussing committees instead of sitting down and writing a law.
Discussing a service mandate for Israeli Arabs, the coalition chairman admitted that due to the regional conflicts Israel is engulfed in, it is understandable not to ask Israeli Arabs to service in the military. "But the moment you start talking about civilian service, work in health education and welfare... why not?"
"Why does an Arab youth need to go study at university at the age of 18 and a Jewish youngster needs to go work in a hospital?"
"There's no reason why a haredi (youth) can do civilian service and an Arab can't," he repeated.