Netanyahu sworn in as head of most far-right Israeli government

Jerusalem, Dec 29 (EFE).- Benjamin Netanyahu was sworn in as prime minister on Thursday after Israel’s parliament approved his new coalition government, with 63 of 120 lawmakers voting in favor of the most far-right administration in the country’s history.

Israel’s longest-serving leader is embarking on his sixth term in office after heading the opposition for 18 months while on trial for charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust.

Taking his oath of office, the 73-year-old pledged to maintain allegiance to the state of Israel and its laws, to fulfill his duties as prime minister and respect the decisions of the Knesset.

Hundreds of people took to the streets to protest against Netanyahu’s six-way coalition, made up of religious and radical right-wing Jewish supremacist parties, and its policies during the parliament session.

Before the swearing-in, Amir Ohana of Netanyahu’s conservative Likud party was elected as the new speaker of parliament, becoming the first openly homosexual politician to hold the position.

Of the 30 ministers that include some controversial figures, only five are women.

Jewish supremacist Itamar Ben Gvir will be the minister of national security, while Bezalel Smotrich of the far-right Religious Zionist Party will hold a ministerial role in the defense ministry, as well as the finance ministry.

Far-right politician Orit Struck will be appointed the national missions minister, and ultra-Orthodox Aryeh Deri will take over the health and interior ministries.

A law was amended for the Shas party leader Deri to allow him to become a minister despite being convicted of tax fraud.

The remaining portfolios are set for Likud members, with Eli Cohen in foreign affairs, Yoav Galant in defense, Israel Katz in energy and Yariv Levin in justice.EFE


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