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02 Mar 2020 | 08:24 PM UTC

Israel: Netanyahu declares victory in Israel elections March 3 /update 1

Exit polls on March 3 show Benjamin Netanyahu ahead of main rival Benny Gantz in parliamentary elections; associated political rallies possible

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Event

Incumbent Prime Minister Benkjamin Netanyahu declared victory in the Israel elections on Tuesday, March 3, after exit polls placed him ahead of his main rival Benny Gantz. Gantz has called on activitists to wait for official results before deciding the outcome. Initial reports indicate that Netanyahu’s Likud party and associated parties captured 59 out of 120 seats in parliament, one short of a majority.

Political rallies and protests are possible following the election results; a heightened security presence and localized traffic disruptions are to be anticipated near all such demonstrations. 

Context

Elections in April and September 2019 failed to produce a coalition government. On November 21, Prime Minister Netanyahu was indicted on charges of fraud, breach of trust, and bribery. According to legal experts, Netanyahu faces up to ten years in prison if convicted of bribery and a maximum three-year term for fraud and breach of trust. Netanyahu, who has denied any wrongdoing, will not be required to resign from his current post.

Advice

Individuals in Israel are advised to monitor the situation, avoid public demonstrations due to the risk of violence, anticipate localized disruptions, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities and home governments.