JERUSALEM (AP) – The Israeli opposition leader, Benny Gantz, swore to form a government that does not include the accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or the Arab parties in Parliament.
In a series of televised interviews before the general elections, Gantz tried to project confidence that the March 2 elections will offer a decisive result that will avoid another process, as has happened twice.RELATED
The Blue and White party of Gantz currently surpasses the Likud of Netanyahu, although none seems to have the free path to the parliamentary majority required to form a coalition government.
Gantz presented two possible trajectories during an interview with the Channel 12 news on Saturday night. He said he will either be associated with a wide range of “Jewish and democratic” parties – including the ultra-nationalist party led by Avigdor Lieberman – or could he join the ruling Likud Party, but only without the presence of Netanyahu, who is under prosecution for corruption.
“Netanyahu ended his historic participation from a political point of view. Likud with Bibi cannot form a government, and without Bibi there is unity, ”he said calling Netanyahu by his nickname.
Gantz, a former military chief, has made an energetic campaign in an attempt to gain a resounding victory as the election approaches. Apparently he strengthened his bond with Lieberman, whose nationalist party Yisrael Beitenu emerged from the field of Netanyahu’s right wing and caused a crisis that led to several elections.
Lieberman has ruled out participating in a government with Netanyahu and has conditioned his participation only if the ultra-Orthodox Jewish parties he considers have exerted disproportionate power are excluded.
“The era of Netanyahu came to an end,” Lieberman said Saturday while expressing a recent opening to participate in a government with the leftist parties he once avoided.
Aron Heller is on Twitter as: www.twitter.com/aronhellerap