Israel: President wants to task Netanyahu with forming a government

Israeli President Izchak Herzog wants to appoint former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to form a new government on Sunday.

Israel: President wants to task Netanyahu with forming a government

Israeli President Izchak Herzog wants to appoint former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to form a new government on Sunday.

Herzog will give the mandate to the leader of the right-wing conservative Likud party, his spokesman announced after three days of consultations with representatives from all parties. A meeting between Herzog and Netanyahu is scheduled for Sunday (11:00 a.m. CET).

The 73-year-old then has four weeks to form a government. However, he is aiming to forge the coalition much earlier. Negotiations with his possible coalition partners, including the far-right alliance of Bezalel Smotrich and Itamar Ben-Gvir, are already underway. Your Religious Zionist Party wants to implement far-reaching changes, including a weakening of the judicial system. According to media reports, a government could be in place as early as next week. The new parliament will be sworn in on Tuesday.

Netanyahu's right-wing religious camp won 64 out of 120 seats in the November 1 election. It was the fifth election in Israel in three and a half years. Incumbent Prime Minister Jair Lapid's liberal Future Party came in second after Netanyahu's Likud party. The Religious Zionist Party made it to third place.

For Netanyahu, it would be the second comeback to the post of prime minister. In Israel's history, no one has held office longer than he. The right-wing conservative politician was Prime Minister from 1996 to 1999, then again continuously from 2009 to 2021. With his replacement last year by the current government, the Netanyahu era was initially considered over. However, the eight-party coalition collapsed in June due to internal disputes.

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