As US Middle East peace envoy George Mitchell arrived in Israel on Thursday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insisted there will be no halt to settlement building in East Jerusalem, even as a far right political ally hinted at some flexibility over a freeze.
The controversial idea – though not new – could still undermine Netanyahu and erode Israel's relations with moderate Arab countries.
While the Likud chairman has broad support among right-wing parties after parliamentary polls, he’s courting Kadima’s Livni.
Prime Minister-designate Tzipi Livni called on Sunday for parliamentary elections instead of more negotiations with right-wing parties to form a new government.
Aryeh Deri, jailed for bribery in 2000, tries for a comeback in the Jerusalem mayoral contest as Israel reels from several high-profile political scandals.