Israel : Stalemate Persists Despite Consultations

After numerous negotiations, the leader of the Blue and White Party, Benny Gantz has also not been able to form a coalition government.

Lawmakers in Israel have 21 days to nominate a candidate with a majority support of 61 signatures capable of forming a government and become the new Prime Minister of Israel. This follows the failure by the Blue and White Party headed by Benny Gantz and Benjamin’s Netanyahu's Likud Party to form a coalition or government of national unity as stipulated by the country’s constitution. In case no consensus is reached after the 21 days, new parliamentary elections will be called by the president for the month of March making it the third within a year. The present unprecedented situation implies, all the 120 parliamentarians (Knesset), members are eligible to campaign for the position of the Prime Minister.

While handing back his mandate on Wednesday, November 20, 2019, Mr Gantz told a news conference in Tel Aviv: "In the past 28 days no stone was left unturned while we tried to form a government that would bring Israel a leadership of dignity, morals and values, a leadership that has been forgotten."

It should be noted that after the September election during which both parties emerged with almost the same number of seats in parliament (Knesset), President Reuven Rivlin called on the two leaders to form a coalition or government of national unity, but they could not agree a power-sharing deal. Thus, after consultations with political stakeholders, President Reuven Rivlin asked Benjamin Netanyahu to form a unity government within twenty eight days, but talks broke down over who would serve as Prime Minister first and Mr Netanyahu's insistence that ultra-Orthodox parties allied to him be included in the government. Mr Gantz's refused arguing that he should be the one to head the government because his party though short of the 61 votes required, scored more votes than the Likud Party whose leader (Netanyahu) is facing criminal charges.

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