Jerusalem: Lapid concedes defeat, congratulates Netanyahu on victory

by Akeem Alao

The Israeli Prime Minister, Yair Lapid, has congratulated the opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu to concede defeat in the general election.

“The State of Israel is above any political considerations,” Lapid said in a statement on Thursday evening.

“I wish Netanyahu good luck for the people of Israel and the State of Israel.”

According to Lapid’s office, the outgoing prime minister told Netanyahu he had instructed all branches of his office to prepare for an orderly transfer of power.

With all the ballots tallied following Israel’s national election on Tuesday, Netanyahu will control not just the largest party in the Knesset, but is poised to return to power leading a 64-strong majority bloc of his religious and right-wing allies in the 120-member Knesset.

Netanyahu’s Likud will be the Knesset largest party, but the major success of the elections was the rise of the Netanyahu-allied, far-right Religious Zionism faction, which includes the Otzma Yehudit party of Itamar Ben Gvir, who was barred from IDF service because of his extremist activities and positions, and the anti-LGBT Noam party.

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