Likud negotiator Sa'ar: There was no agreement not to cut defense budget

Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar, who led the Likud's negotiation team in the recent coalition talks, said Sunday that contrary to reports, there had been no agreement not to cut the defense budget. "What was decided in talks with Labor was only that there would be consultations on the issue," Sa'ar told Army Radio. Sa'ar expressed support for the Treasury's request to postpone by six weeks the deadline for Knesset ratification of the budget, expected to be approved by the cabinet on Sunday. "There is no alternative to the proposal," he said. "To legislate a budget within 45 days, very few of which are business days due to Pessah and Independence Day, is an impossible task." He further estimated that there would be a need to act to protect the Education Ministry's budget.