Home NEWS Israel opposition parties agree to form new unity government

Israel opposition parties agree to form new unity government

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Israeli opposition parties have reached an agreement to form a new government that would end Benjamin Netanyahu’s 12-year tenure as prime minister.

Yair Lapid, leader of the centrist Yesh Atid party, announced an eight-faction coalition had been formed.

Under a rotation arrangement, the head of the right-wing Yamina party, Naftali Bennett, would serve as prime minister first before handing over to Mr Lapid.

Mr Netanyahu, however, attacked the new “left-wing” government as “dangerous”.

In his first comments since the agreement was reached, Mr Netanyahu urged Knesset (parliament) members “elected by votes from the right” to oppose the coalition, which still needs to be approved by a parliamentary vote before being sworn in.

The vote is not expected to take place for some days, and there is still a chance this newly formed coalition could be upended by defections.

In a statement, Mr Lapid said he had informed President Reuven Rivlin of the agreement, adding: “I pledge that this government will work in the service of all Israeli citizens, those who voted for it and those who did not.

“It will respect its opponents and do everything in its power to unite and connect all parts of Israeli society.”

An image carried on Israeli media showed Mr Lapid, Mr Bennett and Mansour Abbas, leader of the Arab Islamist Raam party, signing the agreement, a deal many thought impossible.

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