The two main challengers to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have announced an alliance on Thursday in a bid to defeat him in April’s election.
Benny Gantz, a former Israeli military chief of staff, and “centrist” politician Yair Lapid said they would form a joint list for the April 9 election and take turns as prime minister if they won.
— Middle East Monitor (@MiddleEastMnt) February 22, 2019
The announcement comes after Netanyahu reached a preliminary electoral deal with fringe far-right religious-nationalist parties, led by disciples of the convicted terrorist Rabbi Meir Kahane, awarding the education and housing ministries to the out-and-out racist Otzma Yehudit party – Arab-haters who believe in Jewish supremacy.
Kahane’s Kach Party, the forerunner of Oztma Yehudit, was after a string of deadly militant attacks deemed too extreme even for Israel’s Knesset and was prescribed as a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States and the European Union.
— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) February 21, 2019
Opinion polls have shown the two to be the main challengers to Netanyahu, who is never-the-less expected to win – despite wide-ranging corruption investigations into his affairs.
Thursday night is the deadline for submitting party lists for the election. Left-wing groups and Arab-led parties are still negotiating over possible mergers.
(Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, PC, Social Media)