Israel divided: Netanyahu’s coalition crisis – podcast

A cabinet split over military service for ultra-Orthodox Jews and large street protests demanding the release of hostages are threatening the prime minister’s grip on power. Bethan McKernan reports from Jerusalem

As the war in Gaza approaches its seventh month, tens of thousands of protesters in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and other cities in Israel have demanded the release of hostages held in Gaza and called for new elections.

The Guardian’s Jerusalem correspondent, Bethan McKernan, tells Michael Safi it is a moment of political danger for the prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, who also faces pressure from within his ruling coalition over the issue of exemption from military service granted to the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community. Israel’s allies, including the US, are piling pressure on Netanyahu to urgently allow aid into Gaza, which faces a famine, and to spell out how he will address the aftermath of the conflict.

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