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    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures while speaking to Russian President Vladimir Putin during their meeting in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, 4 April 2019

    Israel's Most Long-Serving Prime Minister: The Ups and Downs of Netanyahu's Tenure

    © AP Photo / Alexander Zemlianichenko
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    The Israeli prime minister has successfully won four terms in elections, despite several scandals that haunted him ahead of the votes. The last general election hasn't brought him a fifth term, but so far he remains the interim head of the government and has still a chance to win in the September 2019 elections.

    Benjamin Netanyahu has set several records throughout his political career and this July he reached yet another, becoming the longest-serving Prime Minister in Israel’s history, surpassing David Ben-Gurion. His career as Prime Minister has witnessed not only astounding successes and victories, but also bitter failures

    Achievements

    • Netanyahu is a staunch proponent of economic liberalisation and as such conducted policy of privatising government-controlled companies, slashing excessive regulations and taxes on business. The reforms lead to unprecedented growth in the Israeli economy, boosting its GDP growth from near 0 to almost 6% over the course of 5 years, reducing unemployment from 13% to 4% and reducing the national debt-to-GDP ratio to 60%
    • Under Netanyahu, Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) eliminated a system of underground tunnels used by militants to covertly enter the country, thus boosting security
    An Israeli army officer gives journalists a tour, Friday, July 25, 2014, of a tunnel allegedly used by Palestinian militants for cross-border attacks, at the Israel-Gaza Border
    © AP Photo / Jack Guez, Pool
    An Israeli army officer gives journalists a tour, Friday, July 25, 2014, of a tunnel allegedly used by Palestinian militants for cross-border attacks, at the Israel-Gaza Border
    • Netanyahu also managed to achieve several ceasefires with Hamas over the course of his tenureы, thus temporarily stopping attacks on Israel
    • Additionally, under Netanyahu Israel continued the construction of barriers on the borders with Western Bank, built a barrier on the border with Egypt and Lebanon, and initiated construction of a security fence on border with Jordan, further enhancing the security on the country's borders
    In this Monday, March 25, 2019 file photo, President Donald Trump smiles at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, after signing a proclamation in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House in Washington
    © AP Photo / Susan Walsh
    In this Monday, March 25, 2019 file photo, President Donald Trump smiles at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, right, after signing a proclamation in the Diplomatic Reception Room at the White House in Washington
    • During Netanyahu's latest term in office, Israel's ties with the US significantly improved after their downfall under Obama's administration. Namely, President Donald Trump, who actively supported Tel Aviv's aspirations, officially recognised Jerusalem as the Israeli capital and the Golan Heights as its territory
    • Trump also withdrew the US from the Iran nuclear deal, which had been highly criticised by Netanyahu, and re-imposed sanctions against the Islamic Republic

    Failures and Scandals

    • Despite Netanyahu's efforts in the sphere of security, he failed to completely stop rockets from being launched at Israeli territory from Gaza
    • Corruption accusations have haunted Netanyahu throughout his political career. Israeli police sought to indict him on influence-peddling charges in 1997 and on corruption in 1999, but the cases never moved further due to lack of evidence
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the Israeli Air Force pilots' graduation ceremony at Hatzerim air base in southern Israel June 27, 2019
    © REUTERS / AMIR COHEN
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the Israeli Air Force pilots' graduation ceremony at Hatzerim air base in southern Israel June 27, 2019
    • New corruption cases against him surfaced in 2017 and have so far not been dropped yet
    • Netanyahu almost ruined Israeli's peace accord with Jordan, after the assassination attempt of the leader of Hamas' political bureau, Khaled Mashal, which he ordered, was uncovered and led to diplomatic crisis

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    Tags:
    failure, success, Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel
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