Israel’s president receives final election results that confirmed deadlock

Jerusalem, Mar 31 (EFE).- Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin on Wednesday received the final results from the country’s fourth elections in two years, which gave no candidate a clear path to victory.

Rivlin will begin talks with political parties on Monday to decide which party leader will get the chance to try to form a government on April 7, in a bid to end the country’s two-year stalemate.

 “My main consideration in picking a candidate will be their chance of forming a government that will win the Knesset’s endorsement,” Rivlin said after he was handed over the results.

“I have not completed my seven-year term as president yet and this is the fifth time I have received election results, and the fourth in less than two years,” added Rivlin.

The Israeli Central Elections Committee officially released the vote results, confirming the country’s political deadlock, with neither Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor the opposition bloc winning enough seats for a majority.

There are 120 seats in the Knesset, which means 61 are needed for a majority.

Netanyahu and his right-wing and religious alliance won 52 seats, and the anti-Netanyahu opposition bloc took 57.

The unaligned right-wing Yamina, with seven seats, and the Islamist Arab party Raam, with four, have become the keys to the formation of a government.

Thirteen parties will form the fragmented parliament (Knesset) from which the new government must emerge to avoid a fifth election.

The poll turnout was 66.7 percent, the lowest since 2009.

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