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Israel's main commercial TV channels have bumped party political broadcasts, set to be aired ahead of February's general election, from their primetime spots to slots with far fewer viewers.

Channel 10 is set to air the advertisements at 6.00 P.M., and Channel 2 is due to air them at 11.15 P.M., the chairman of the Central Elections Committee relayed on Monday.

Justice Eliezer Rivlin, the committee chairman, said the move was made after meetings between members of his panel and the various broadcasting authorities.

Rivlin said the decision was reached "from a desire to balance the interests... of the public with the needs and interests of the broadcasting bodies."

Channel 1, which is run by the state broadcasting authority, was the only station not to remove the broadcasts from primetime, and is set to air them at 10.15 P.M.

The move came after the designated period for pre-election advertisements was shortened from three to two weeks.