JERUSALEM: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has won the Israeli national election, securing a record fifth term in office despite running neck in neck with his challenger Benny Gantz, the country’s three main television channels said on Wednesday.
With 97 percent of the votes counted, neither of the candidates’ parties had captured a ruling majority, but Netanyahu was clearly in a strong position to form a coalition government with other right-wing factions that have backed him.
possible indictment in three graft cases, and has denied wrongdoing in all of them.
The veteran right-wing leader’s Likud party and Gantz’s new centrist Blue and White party both won 35 seats, according to the Knesset website and the Israeli TV channels. That would mean a five-seat gain for Likud.