Latvia the strongest prime ministers party after the election

Israel: Lapid congratulates Netanyahu on election victory

Former Israeli Prime Minister Jair Lapid congratulated his rival Benjamin Netanyahu on his victory in Israel’s parliamentary elections on Tuesday. Lapid also informed the opposition leader that he had given instructions to prepare for an orderly transition, Lapid’s office said in a statement this evening.

Right-wing conservative Netanyahu won parliamentary elections in Israel after all votes were counted. His right-wing religious camp secured a majority of 64 of the 120 seats in the Knesset, several Israeli media reported this evening. The 73-year-old Likud party would have been the strongest force, with 32 seats in parliament. They are followed by Liberal Prime Minister Jair Lapid’s Future Party with 24 seats.

Right-wing extremist alliance in third place for the first time

For the first time in Israel’s history, a far-right coalition ranked third. The Zionist Religious Party of Bezalel Smotrich and Itamar Ben-Gvir is seen as Netanyahu’s mastermind and won 14 seats. The left-liberal Meretz party and the Arab Balad party fell short of the 3.25% barrier.

On Tuesday, the people of Israel voted on the composition of the Knesset for the fifth time in just three and a half years. Turnout was still comparatively high at 71.3%. The current eight-party coalition collapsed in June after losing its majority after just 12 months.

The official final result will be announced next Wednesday. President Yitzchak Herzog then has until November 16 to nominate a candidate to form a government. He has 28 days to do this, with a possible extension of another 14 days.