Shortly after Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday accepted a mandate to form Israel’s next government, the Likud Chairman arranged to meet Kadima leader Tzipi Livni on Sunday for coalition talks. Livni told Netanyahu by phone that he was well aware of her position and there was nothing preventing them from meeting. Both rivals had laid claim to victory after last week’s inconclusive general election.
Some 65 percent of eligible Israeli voters cast their ballots in the state’s general elections on Tuesday. This was approximately 2.5 percent higher than the number of votes gathered by the same time during the last elections in 2006.
Likud and Kadima are in a neck-and-neck race to be the next Knesset’s largest party, according to the latest Haaretz-Dialog poll. According to the poll, It is now down to only two seats in Likud’s favor. In contrast, Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu party continues to surge: The latest poll, which surveyed 1,000 people showed it winning 18 seats, up from 15 last week. If this forecast proves accurate, Labor will be relegated, for the first time in its history, to the fourth-largest party, with only 14 seats.