Israel elections: Netanyahu set for comeback with far right’s help – partial results – BBC

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Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is on the brink of a dramatic comeback, after partial outcomes showed he was on course to win a majority in parliament with the particular far right’s help.

With 90. 7% associated with votes from Tuesday’s election counted, Mr Netanyahu’s bloc is set in order to win 65 out of 120 seats.

“We are close to a big victory, ” he told jubilant supporters in Jerusalem.

However, he will be dependent on the support of the ultra-nationalist Religious Zionism party.

Its leaders, Itamar Ben-Gvir and Bezalel Smotrich, have gained notoriety for using anti-Arab rhetoric and advocating the deportation of “disloyal” politicians or civilians.

Mister Ben-Gvir was a follower of the particular late, explicitly racist, ultra-nationalist Meir Kahane, whose organisation was banned in His home country of israel and designated as a terrorist group by the United States. Mr Ben-Gvir himself has been convicted of incitement to racism and supporting a terrorist organisation.

Last month, Mr Ben-Gvir hit the headlines when he has been filmed pulling out a gun after being targeted along with a stone while visiting the flashpoint Palestinian Sheikh Jarrah district of occupied East Jerusalem, and calling for police to shoot the culprits.

Speaking in order to reporters upon Wednesday, Mr Ben-Gvir promised to “work for all associated with Israel, even those who hate me”.

After exit polls were published on Tuesday night, followers of Spiritual Zionism gathered in Sheikh Jarrah, shouting taunts plus throwing stones towards Palestinian areas.

Mister Netanyahu, accompanied by his wife Sara, appeared at his Likud party’s political election night venue at 03: 00 local time (01: 00 GMT) on Wednesday to thunderous applause.

“We have won a huge vote of confidence through the people of His home country of israel, ” he told their cheering supporters.

Hours earlier, when the particular exit forms predicted that Mr Netanyahu’s bloc would win 61 or 62 seats, the room had been a scene of celebration as individuals jumped up and down, waved flags and chanted his nickname, Bibi. One man repeatedly blew the shofar, or even ram’s horn, a ritual instrument used by some Jewish people at times of special significance.

At his party’s camp in Tel Aviv however, current Prime Minister Yair Lapid told his supporters that will “nothing” had been yet decided and their centre-left Yesh Atid celebration would wait for the final results.

Benjamin Netanyahu (left) and Yair Lapid (file photo)

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Mr Netanyahu, 73, is one of Israel’s most controversial political figures, loathed by many on the particular centre and left but adored simply by Likud’s grassroots supporters.

He is a firm supporter of Israel’s settlement-building in the West Bank, busy since the 1967 Middle East war. Settlements there are considered illegal under international law, though Israel disputes this.

He opposes the creation of the Palestinian state on the western part of the country Bank and Gaza Strip as a solution to the particular Israel-Palestinian conflict – a formula supported by most of the international community, including the Biden administration within the US.

Mr Netanyahu is also currently on trial for alleged bribery, fraud and breach of trust – charges he fiercely denies. His possible partners in a Likud-led coalition government have said they would reform the law, in a move which might bring the halt to his test.

According to the partial results, Likud stands in order to be the particular biggest party, with 32 seats, commanding a number with the assistance of nationalist and religious parties.

Yesh Atid, which led the coalition which usually brought down Mr Netanyahu in elections last year, is projected to win 24 seats.

Religious Zionism appears to possess won 14 seats, which would make it the third largest celebration.

“It will be better now, inch said Religious Zionism ally, Julian, at the party’s location in Jerusalem.

“When [Religious Zionism politician Itamar Ben-Gvir] will be minister associated with public security, it will certainly be even better – he’ll bring back security to the people of His home country of israel. That’s very important. ”

However , political scientist Gayil Talshir, from the particular Hebrew University of Jerusalem, warned that if the exit polls “reflect the real results, Israel is on its way to become Orban’s Hungary”, recently branded an “electoral autocracy” by the EU.

If Mr Netanyahu can secure a majority, it will stave off the prospect of a sixth selection in just four years right after analysts predicted deadlock.

It would mark a remarkable turnaround with regard to Mr Netanyahu, whose political future was widely written off after Mr Lapid formed an unlikely alliance of ideologically diverse parties to take power in June 2021, along with the uniting aim of making it impossible for Mr Netanyahu in order to form the government.

In the time, Mr Netanyahu vowed to bring it down as quickly as possible and one year later the coalition government concluded it could not survive plus collapsed right after resignations meant it no longer had a majority.

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