UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been asked by Israeli President Reuven Rivlin to form the next government.
Rivlin made the announcement at a joint news conference with Netanyahu broadcast on the official Cannes channel.
Netanyahu’s mandate followed the failure of talks earlier Wednesday between Netanyahu and the leader of the “blue-white” coalition, Benny Gantz, who won the highest number of seats (33 seats) in the September 17 elections. This September.
Rivlin told Netanyahu in front of reporters, “I instruct you to form a government,” after the issuance of a statement from Rivlin’s office that “the responsibility to form the next government will be given to the Prime Minister and the leader of the Likud.”
Rivlin added that “following the consultations conducted by Siakol task of forming a government to the prime minister, although both Gantz and Netanyahu can not get the support of 61 deputies to form a government, but the possibility and capacity of Netanyahu is greater.”
Rivlin pointed out that the right-wing coalition led by Netanyahu was able to get the support of 55 deputies in the Knesset (parliament), while the center-left coalition led by Gantz to the support of 54 deputies.
Rivlin said in his speech that his efforts to form a government of national unity depends on equal size of positions between the two sides.
Earlier Wednesday, the Central Election Commission in Israel announced the official and final results of the elections, with a coalition of “blue-white” 33 seats, compared to 32 seats for the party “Likud” led by Netanyahu.
Netanyahu has 28 days to form a government, which could be extended for two more weeks.
According to Israeli law, if the government is not formed during the two periods, the head of state will assign another candidate for this task.
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