- The Washington Times - Monday, February 23, 2009

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s Labor Party leader Ehud Barak has rejected Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu’s invitation to join his government.

After meeting Netanyahu on Monday, Barak says his dovish party will serve as a “responsible, serious and constructive opposition.”

The hawkish Netanyahu has been appointed to form the next government. He hopes to bring moderates like Barak and centrist leader Tzipi Livni into his coalition to win international support and a stable parliamentary majority.

Livni says she and Netanyahu made no progress in their late-night meeting Sunday.

Netanyahu says he will meet both leaders again.