Israel’s prime minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu has informed Israeli President Isaac Herzog that he has succeeded in forming a coalition government, Reuters reported.
“I have managed (to form a government),” Netanyahu said on Twitter, minutes before a midnight deadline set by Herzog.
The announcement came after Netanyahu reached an agreement with his far-right allies.
“The inclusion of the hardliners Itamar Ben-Gvir of the ultranationalist Jewish Power party and Bezalel Smotrich from the far-right Religious Zionism party has shocked Palestinians,” Reuters noted.
בזכות התמיכה הציבורית העצומה לה זכינו בבחירות האחרונות, עלה בידי להקים ממשלה שתפעל לטובת כל אזרחי ישראל 🇮🇱❤️ pic.twitter.com/ijtDppkaSm
— Benjamin Netanyahu – בנימין נתניהו (@netanyahu) December 21, 2022
According to Reuters, Ben-Gvir will serve as the next Israeli security minister with authority over police while “Smotrich’s pro-settler party will have control over planning in the West Bank, giving it wide powers over the lives of Palestinians and opening the door to an expansion of Israeli settlements.”
The new government will take office amidst tensions, in what the United Nations Mideast Envoy Tor Wennesland referred to as “the deadliest year for Palestinians in the West Bank since 2005”.
According to the Palestinian Ministry of Health, the number of Palestinians who have been killed by Israeli army gunfire in the occupied territories since the start of 2022 reaches 224, including 53 Palestinians from the Gaza Strip.
(The Palestine Chronicle)