Some 92 MPs out of a total of 120 voted in favor of dissolving parliament in a final vote on Thursday morning. Shortly before this vote, Israeli elected officials had decided to set November 1 as the date for the next elections.
A parliamentary committee, made up of elected members of the opposition and the ruling coalition, had agreed at the start of the week to dissolve the Knesset, Parliament, on Wednesday evening, but this vote was postponed due in particular to debates which lingered in the chamber over various bills that elected officials wanted to pass before the dissolution.
“I have no intention of running in the next election, but I will remain a loyal soldier of this country, which I have served all my life as a soldier, officer, minister and prime minister,” he said on Wednesday. evening the outgoing Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, confirming to hand over the leadership of his Yamina formation to the current Minister of the Interior, Ayelet Shaked.
Mr. Bennett must cede Friday at midnight (2100 GMT Thursday) his post of Prime Minister to the head of diplomacy Yaïr Lapid who will ensure the interim until the formation of the next government, after the elections in November. But as of Thursday afternoon, the two leaders are expected to hold a symbolic handover ceremony.
In June 2021, Messrs. Bennett and Lapid had written a page in the history of Israel by bringing together a coalition of eight parties (right, left, center), including for the first time an Arab formation, in order to cut short 12 years of uninterrupted power in Benjamin Netanyahu.
But a year later, the coalition lost its majority in the chamber to the point where the government was unable to pass the renewal of a law guaranteeing the more than 475,000 settlers in the occupied West Bank the same rights as the other Israelis.
In this context, Naftali Bennett, himself an ardent defender of settlements, which are contrary to international law, preferred to harakiri his government, announcing his intention to dissolve the chamber to call new elections.
– Towards Lapid –
But the coalition agreement between MM. Bennett and Lapid called for power-sharing, including a clause that Mr. Lapid would serve as caretaker until a new government is formed if Parliament dissolves, which also comes as polls are rising. still state of a fragmentation of the Israeli political landscape with 13 parties sharing 120 seats.
“What we need today is to return to the concept of Israeli unity and not let the forces of darkness divide us,” Lapid said last week, who will not have time to celebrate. his accession to the highest steps of Israeli power for a long time.
This former star journalist, who founded the centrist party “Yesh Atid” (“There is a future” in Hebrew) a decade ago, will have to quickly put his troops in battle order for the legislative elections, in addition to to be both Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Mr. Lapid will welcome US President Joe Biden to Israel in mid-July for his first tour of the Middle East since arriving at the White House. He will have to keep his eyes on national politics with opposition and Likud party leader Benjamin Netanyahu, 72, on trial for corruption in a series of cases, who is seeking to regain his former post as prime minister.
“The (coalition) experiment failed. That’s what happens when you put together a fake far-right with the radical left, all with the Muslim Brotherhood…” Netanyahu said on Thursday. .
“Will we have another Lapid government that will also be a failure or a right-wing government led by us? We are the only alternative! A strong, nationalist and responsible government,” Netanyahu added, launching his next election campaign.