Israel’s new parliament sworn in

JERUSALEM, Oct. 4, 2019 (Xinhua) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) attends the swearing-in ceremony of the Knesset in Jerusalem on Oct. 3, 2019. Israeli lawmakers were sworn into the new parliament, or Knesset, on Thursday afternoon, without a new government formed, after tight results in the country’s do-over elections caused a political deadlock. n The ceremony marked the inauguration of Israel’s 22nd Knesset. (Photo by Gil Cohen Magen/Xinhua/IANS)

Jerusalem, Nov 16 (IANS) Israel’s new parliament has sworn in after the right-wing bloc won the elections two weeks ago.

The 120 elected lawmakers were sworn-in at a session of the parliament, or Knesset, on Tuesday hosted by President Isaac Herzog, Xinhua news agency reported.

During the session, Herzog urged unity and understanding among lawmakers, as Israelis “are exhausted from the infighting and the fallout” after going through five elections in nearly four years.

He called on the lawmakers to take “the responsibility of weaning us off this addiction to never-ending conflicts,” and to protect the rights of the minorities, who fear “their needs will not be on the agenda.”

The election victory by former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party and three ultra-nationalist parties with anti-Arab stand has aroused concerns about widening political rift in the country.

Netanyahu, supported by 64 seats of the 120-seat Knesset, is expected to head the next government. On Sunday, Herzog tasked him with forming a coalition government.

Under Israeli law, Netanyahu is required to present a coalition government before a mid-December deadline or the president would appoint another lawmaker to form a government.

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