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Former interior minister Gideon Saar..(Photo by: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)
Sa'ar says national unity government is 'still on the table'
Netanyahu denies further reports that he was seeking a national unity government with the Zionist Union.
Former Likud minister Gideon Sa'ar says that the Zionist Union and Likud  forming  a national unity government in the next Knesset is a possibility that is still alive. 
Speaking at an event at a pub in Tel Aviv on Monday evening, Sa'ar said despite Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Zionist Union leader Isaac Herzog's statements to the contrary, a unity government is still on the table, Army Radio reported. 
"Based on the character of statements made in the past few days, and I include those that the public does not hear, I do not deny the possibility that this [a national unity government] will happen," Sa'ar said.  
The former interior minister who resigned in September said that when Herzog says "the realistic option is that the Zionist Union is headed for the opposition" it leaves room for the interpretation that a unity government is still possible.  
On Monday, for the second day in a row, Netanyahu denied reports that he was seeking a national unity government with the Zionist Union. 
After Netanyahu denied sending his former chief of staff Natan Eshel to Herzog, Channel 2 reported that he sent to the Zionist Union leader as a mediator Hollywood producer Arnon Milchen. Milchen has been involved behind the scenes in forming the last few governments in Israel and in brokering truces between Netanyahu and his allies in Likud.   
Netanyahu issued a statement saying he respects Milchen but is not using him as a mediator. The statement reiterated that he intends to form a right-wing government with the Likud's natural partners. Herzog also denied the report. 
The prime minister received 67 Knesset member nominations on Monday prompting President Reuven Rivlin to announce that the prime minister would be tasked with forming the next government.

Gil Hoffman contributed to this report.
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