Israel: new prime minister replaces 12-year-old Netanyahu

Naftali Bennett, leader of the Yamina Party, was sworn in as the 13th Prime Minister of Israel last night during a ceremony in the Knesset. 60 members of parliament present voted for the new coalition, 59 did not support it.

The 120-member parliament was attended by 119 of its members. Thus, Naftali Bennett became the new prime minister of Israel, replacing Netanyahu, who had been in power for 12 years, in this post, TASS reports. 59 deputies voted against: from the Netanyahu Likud party, orthodox and far-right parties. Miki Levy from the Yesh Atid party was voted on as the new speaker of the chamber.

From the rostrum of the Knesset, Bennett took the oath: “I, Naftali Bennett, pledge, as Prime Minister, to be faithful to Israel and its laws, to faithfully fulfill the duties of the Prime Minister and the decisions of the Knesset.” Lapid also swore a corresponding oath as a replacement prime minister in the rotation. Then, 28 ministers and six deputy ministers were sworn in.

In the new 36th Israeli government, the Ministry of Defense will be headed by the head of “Kahol-Laban” Benny Gantz, who led the defense department in the previous cabinet headed by Benjamin Netanyahu. Lapid will be the head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the first 2 years, and the Ministry of Internal Affairs will be Ayelet Shaked, Bennett’s ally in the Yamina party. There will be 3 Russian-speaking ministers in the cabinet: the leader of the Our Home is Israel party Avigdor Lieberman (will head the Ministry of Finance), Konstantin Razvozov from Yesh Atid (Minister of Tourism), and Zeev Elkin from the New Hope party (will head the Ministry of Jerusalem Affairs) ).

Bennett and Gantz identified countering the acquisition of nuclear weapons by Iran as security priorities and noted that they would work to strengthen the alliance with the United States. Bennett said from the parliamentary rostrum: “In a difficult period, we have taken responsibility and we will represent all the citizens of Israel.” In response, Netanyahu promised from the Knesset rostrum: “The Israeli opposition will have a very clear and loud voice, and we will soon return to power.”

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