After nearly four years of political deadlock and five elections, Israel swore in the most right-wing parliament in its history. Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu is working to cobble together a far-right and religious governing coalition in the 120-seat parliament, or Knesset.
Jewish left-leaning parties long the champions of negotiations with the Palestinians — suffered major losses in the November 1st election. The surging popularity of a right-wing alliance once on the fringes of Israeli society helped propel Netanyahu’s political comeback even as he stands trial on corruption charges.
Israeli President Isaac Herzog appealed for national unity in his speech after the country’s five divisive elections, saying Israelis are “exhausted from the infighting and its fallout.” Herzog also called on the elected representatives to safeguard the rights of Israel’s minorities who fear the next government coalition.