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    An Ultra-Orthodox Jewish man looks at an elections billboards of the Blue and White party leaders, from left to right, Moshe Yaalon, Benny Gantz, Yair Lapid and Gabi Ashkenazi, alongside a panel on the right showing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu flanked by extreme right politicians, from the left, Itamar Ben Gvir, Bezalel Smotrich and Michael Ben Ari in Bnei Brak, Israel, Saturday, March 16, 2019. Hebrew reads on the left billboard The nation of Israel lives and on the right billboard Kahana Lives in a reference to a banned ultranationalist party in the 1994.

    LIVE UPDATES: Likud Wins General Election After 96 Percent of Votes Counted

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    Polling stations opened in the Israeli general election at 7 a.m. local time (4 a.m. GMT) with exit polls expected at 10 p.m., when the voting ends.

    Israelis have been heading to the polls to vote in a general election, and decide whether long-time Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is re-elected for a fifth term. Retired general Benny Gantz from the Blue and White party is considered to be his main rival, according to the polls.

    According to the latest opinion polls, Netanyahu's right-wing Likud party and Gantz's Blue and White could receive a similar number of seats in the 120-seat parliament.

     

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    • 09:36

      Right-Wing Bloc Gets 65 Seats in Israeli Parliament With Over 97% Votes Counted

      With over 97% of ballots counted in Israel's Knesset elections, Likud and Blue and White got 35 seats each. Shas and United Toran Judaism took 8 seats in the Knesset each. They were followed by the Union of Right-Wing Parties (5), Yisrael Beytenu (5), Kulanu (4), Meretz (4), and Ra’am Balad (4).

    • 05:57

      Netanyahu’s Likud Party Wins General Election After 96 Percent of Votes Counted - Reports

      With 96 percent of the vote counted, results showed Likud Party and other right-wing parties allied to him win between 65 and 67 seats in the 120-seat parliament following Tuesday's election.

    • 03:48

      Partial Results Show Likud Party Winning 38 Knesset Seats vs 35 Seats for Blue and White Party - Reports

      The Haaretz newspaper said Wednesday, citing preliminary results, that the right-wing Likud party is on course to win general Israeli election.

    • 03:43

      Likud Party Leading With 28.32 Percent - Israeli Election Committee

      The right-wing Likud party is winning the Israeli parliamentary election with 28.32 percent of votes, while the opposition centrist alliance Kahol Lavan comes second with 25.34 percent, the Central Election Committee said Wednesday. The statement was made after 1,628,736 ballots had been counted, which amounts to some 25 percent of the number of Israeli citizens, who have a right to vote.

    • 03:08

      Netanyahu Says Coalition Talks With Right-Wing Parties Already Started

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a statement to the media

      Netanyahu Says Nearly All Right-Wing Parties Vowed to Support Him as PM - Report

      Incumbent Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly said Wednesday that he has already started talks with the leaders of right-wing parties in order to form a coalition, adding that nearly all of the parties promised to support him as the country's prime minister in the upcoming term.
      Read more
    • 22:36

      Netanyahu Claims Likud Party Victory, Announces Coalition

      "The right-wing bloc, led by the Likud, won a clear victory. I thank the citizens of Israel for their trust. Already at night, I will start forming the right-wing government together with our natural partners," Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement.

      The announcement was made after exit-polls indicating Netanyahu's Likud party lags slightly behind the Kahol Lavan (Blue and White) opposition bloc, but has better chances to enlist the support of the majority of lawmakers in the new Knesset.

    • 22:19

      Israel's Likud Party, Blue and White Bloc Neck and Neck in First Exit Polls

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party appeared almost neck and neck with his main rival for seats in parliament on election day, varying exit polls indicated, according to Reuters.

    • 20:05

      It Will be Difficult for Gantz to form Gov't Even if He'll Have More Mandates Than Likud - Outgoing Knesset Member

      Israelis are electing the country's new parliament. The vote is largely seen as a referendum on Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has led the government for three consecutive terms. On Sunday, Netanyahu said he will annex Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank if he is re-elected.

      In an interview with Sputnik Ksenia Svetlova, outgoing member of Knesset, said that although the Blue and White can gain more votes, it would be difficult for them to form a government.

      "It will be difficult for Benny Gantz to form a government even if he will have more mandates than the Likud," she said.

      According to Svetlova, Netanyahu is aiming at drama around this recognition [of Golan Heights], but he has indeed received a lot of support for this. The media coverage today was more about the internal Israeli politics. The Golan heights isn’t perceived by security authorities as something that can destabilize the region. There’s not much outcry from the Arab countries about it. While the US is longtime ally but the growing role of Russia in the region makes Israel move closer to Russia too. Security of Jordan is important both for Israel and the US.

    • 19:41

      Arab Party Head Warns of ‘Knesset Without Arabs’

      Leader of Hadash-Ta'al party Ayman Odeh said Tuesday that the low turnout among Arab voters could lead to a "Knesset without Arab representation."

      "We're moving forward with all our strength, going home to home and calling on people to go out and vote. Our nightmare, which is Prime Minister [Netanyahu's] fantasy - a Knesset without Arab representation - suddenly looks like a realistic possibility," Odeh says in a statement.

    • 19:07

      Netanyahu Accuses Blue and White Activists of Vandalising Ballots

    • 18:40

      Voter Turnout Reaches 42% as of 4 p.m.

    • 18:33

      Netanyahu Visits Beach to Urge People to Vote

    • 16:04

      Supporting 'Israel's Innovative Economy' is 'Goal of Blue & White'- Candidate

      An Ultra-Orthodox Jewish man looks at an elections billboards of the Blue and White party leaders, from left to right, Moshe Yaalon, Benny Gantz, Yair Lapid and Gabi Ashkenazi, alongside a panel on the right showing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu flanked by extreme right politicians, from the left, Itamar Ben Gvir, Bezalel Smotrich and Michael Ben Ari in Bnei Brak, Israel, Saturday, March 16, 2019. Hebrew reads on the left billboard The nation of Israel lives and on the right billboard Kahana Lives in a reference to a banned ultranationalist party in the 1994.

      Supporting 'Israel's Innovative Economy' is 'Goal of Blue & White'- Candidate

      Blue and White leader Benny Gantz has cast his vote in Israel's general election. Gantz's political coalition is the main rival of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party. Sputnik discussed the vote with Izhar Shay, a Blue and White political alliance Knesset candidate as well as a venture capital investor and IT entrepreneur.
      Read more
    • 14:07

      Israeli Opposition 'Quite Desperately' Fought Netanyahu - Likud Member

      An ultra-Orthodox Jewish woman votes for Israel's parliamentary election at a polling station in Bnei Brak, Israel, Tuesday, April 9, 2019

      Israeli Opposition 'Quite Desperately' Fought Netanyahu - Likud Member

      Polling stations have opened in Israel as the country votes in a very tight race – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hopes to secure a fifth term. Ahead of the vote, Sputnik talked about the election with Sharren Haskel, a Member of the Knesset and candidate from Likud party.
      Read more
    • 12:45

      Likud Foreign Affairs Chief Reveals Three Main Challenges Israel Faces

      A man walks past a Likud election campaign billboard, depicting U.S. President Donald Trump shaking hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in Jerusalem February 4, 2019

      Likud Foreign Affairs Chief Reveals Three Main Challenges Israel Faces

      Israelis have begun casting their votes in a hotly contested general election. Ahead of the vote, Eli Hazan, foreign affairs director of PM Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party, told Sputnik that a day before the ballot, the PM's bloc trailed the centre-left Blue and White coalition according to the polls, so it will be a challenging election.
      Read more
    • 11:20

      Likud Party Installed 1,300 Hidden Cameras in Poll Stations in Arab Towns - Reports

    • 09:44

      Zehut Will Join Largest Coalition - Netanyahu

    • 09:12

      Gantz Promises 'New path' for Israel After Election

    • 08:40

      Current Israeli Leadership Pinning Social Groups Against Each Other - Blue and White Politician

      Oct. 11, 2018, an Israeli flag in front of the village of Majdal Shams in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights. Syria slammed President Donald Trump's abrupt declaration that Washington will recognise Israel's sovereignty over the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, saying Friday March 22, 2019, the statement was irresponsible and a threat to international peace and stability

      Current Israeli Leadership Pinning Social Groups Against Each Other - Politician

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said he will annex Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank if he is re-elected. Israelis go to the polls on Tuesday, 9 April.
      Read more
    • 07:26

      How Many is Too Many? A Guide to Every Political Party Running for the Knesset

      Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu

      How Many is Too Many? A Guide to Every Political Party Running for the Knesset

      With a record number of parties running in the 9th April Knesset election, its difficult for Israelis themselves to know which horse to back, let alone outsiders to understand the complexities of the country's politics.
      Read more
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    LIVE UPDATES: Likud Wins General Election After 96 Percent of Votes Counted
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