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Netanyahu’s Party OK’s Election Merger

Israel’s Likud Party reportedly voted overwhelmingly to approve merging its candidates list with the nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu party.

Likud members gathered Monday at a party convention in Tel Aviv to vote on the proposal floated last week by the Likud chairman, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Yisrael Beiteinu head Avigdor Liberman, the foreign minister.

A move to put the vote on the proposal to a secret ballot was denied at the convention.

The proposal included stipulations that the Likud head will choose the position of the party’s candidates on the list, as determined by a party primary, and that the two parties will be represented on the list with the balance in the current government – 27 seats for Likud and 15 for Yisrael Beiteinu.

Israeli general elections are set for Jan. 22.

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