Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s office announced Monday that his weakened coalition would be disbanded, and the country would head to new elections in the fall.
JUST IN – Israel is heading for 5th election in 3 years after coalition agrees to dissolve, hold new elections
— Insider Paper (@TheInsiderPaper) June 20, 2022
In a joint statement, Bennett and Lapid said they would bring a bill to dissolve the Knesset to a vote next Monday.
The election could result in a return to power by longtime Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, now the opposition leader.
Since taking office last year, Bennett has struggled to keep his unruly coalition of eight parties together. The party has not had a majority in parliament for over two months due to multiple exits.
Bennett’s office said that Bennett and his leading coalition partner, Yair Lapid, decided to present a vote to dissolve parliament in the coming days.
Lapid would then serve as caretaker prime minister.
Who is Yair Lapid, the man who is slated to become Israel’s next prime minister should the country go to elections? Read my profile of the man who beat Bibi, and now faces the tall task of doing so again: https://t.co/iSVUG6trUy
— Yair Rosenberg (@Yair_Rosenberg) June 20, 2022
Bennett formed the eight-party coalition in June 2021. At conception, the alliance included a diverse array of parties.
Bennett’s coalition made history by becoming the first Israeli coalition government to include an Arab party.
Israel held four inconclusive elections between 2019 and 2021 that were nothing more than expanded referendums concerning Netanyahu’s ability to lead while on trial for corruption.
Netanyahu has denied any wrongdoing.
Polls forecast that Netanyahu’s hardline Likud will again emerge as the largest single party. But it remains unclear whether he could muster the required support of a majority of lawmakers to form a new government.