Israel's Livni: coalition by Sunday or elections

JERUSALEM (AP) -- Israel's Prime Minister-designate Tzipi Livni has set an ultimatum: Either she will have a new government ready by Sunday or she will call for early elections.

Livni said Thursday that she had spoken with Israeli President Shimon Peres and informed him of her decision. Livni still has 10 more days to put together a parliamentary majority, but faced with stiff demands from potential coalition partners seems to have opted to forcing their hands.

An early election could prevent Livni from becoming Israel's first female prime minister in more than 30 years. Opinion polls have indicated that the hawkish Likud party would sweep to power if new elections were held.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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