Israel in a political stalemate after the renunciation of Benyamin Netanyahu

President Reuven Rivlin is expected to hand over the mandate for the formation of a government to Benny Gantz, the centrist blue party.

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Benyamin Netanyahu at a press conference in Jerusalem on 25 September.
Benyamin Netanyahu at a press conference in Jerusalem on 25 September. MENAHEM KAHANA / AFP

After a first failure in the spring, Benyamin Netanyahu recidivated. On Monday, October 21, the Israeli prime minister announced the reappointment of President Reuven Rivlin to form a new government, following the parliamentary elections on 19 September.

The latter should therefore entrust him to Benny Gantz, former chief of staff who entered politics less than a year ago, one of the leaders of the centrist formation Bleu Blanc, and the main rival of Mr. Netanyahu to polls in April and September.

Symbolically, the transfer of this mandate is significant because it is the first time in Israel since 2008 that it is attributed to another political figure.

"The time of Bleu Blanc has come"

But the blocking situation, it remains: a third election will become almost inevitable if Bleu Blanc fails to mobilize parliamentary majority.

While a charge could be laid against him by the end of the year, Mr. Netanyahu intends to gain time and stay in power.

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In a video broadcast Monday night on social networks, the Israeli prime minister has acknowledged with gravity that he did not fulfill the mission that was entrusted to him on 25 September by Reuven Rivlin. He said he "Worked tirelessly to establish a broad government of national unity", which would have included his party – the Likud -, his nationalist and ultraorthodox partners but also Benny Gantz. But his efforts to get him to sit down "At the bargaining table" and so "Prevent a new ballot" have remained in vain, he added.

Benyamin Netanyahu's decision received, President Rivlin said that political parties should be officially informed of the transfer of the mandate to Mr. Gantz by Thursday, October 24.

"The time of Bleu Blanc has come", greeted the interested party on Twitter. In a statement, his training was said "Determined" to train "A Liberal unity government" which would be headed by Mr. Gantz. Only, like the Likud, is Blue Blanc unable to secure the required majority of 61 deputies (out of 120) in the Knesset.


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