(Sandhya Jha, Intern Journalist)
Netanyahu to be PM
In the midst of the Coronavirus crisis, Benjamin Netanyahu is going to become Prime Minister of Israel once again. Despite accusations of corruption and not getting a majority in elections thrice, he won the post of PM from political alliances, for which he has joined hands with his opposition Benny Gantz.
Israeli political analyst Yohanan Placener called the deal a ‘democratic ceasefire’. The personal chemistry of Netanyahu and Prime Minister Modi is considered very strong. Benny Gantz has also many times described India as a strong democracy and emerging power.
Netanyahu Prime Minister for the fourth consecutive time
Both leaders are saying that in the Corona era the country needs a stable government, so an alliance is necessary. There have been three general elections in a year. There were two alliances. None of Netanyahu’s Likud Party and Gantz’s Blue and White Party got a majority. Now both are forming a government together. Netanyahu will take over the reins of the country for the fifth time. However, this will be his fourth consecutive term.
Coalition Government and Conditions
A 14-page agreement was signed between Netanyahu and Gantz to run the government.
According to the agreement – both sides will take office in government in turn.
For the first 18 months, Netanyahu will be the Prime Minister and Gantz will be the Defense Minister.
Arrangements have also been made in the agreement to prevent the two leaders from seizing power.
Netanyahu cannot break the coalition and hold elections after his term ends.
Gantz will also not be able to remove Netanyahu from his post after he is proved guilty of corruption in a lower court. They will have to wait for the decision of the Supreme Court.
What are the challenges before the new government?
Israel has been largely successful in dealing with Covid-19. But, an economic crisis has arisen in front of him. According to an estimate, a quarter of the country’s employees i.e. more than 1 million people have become unemployed.
Netanyahu had promised in the election that he would merge areas in the West Bank where the Jewish settlements are inhabited. It has also been agreed in the coalition government. The merger will start from July 1. This will increase conflict with Palestine. This merger is also illegal according to international laws.
Nationalist parties dominated power during the Netanyahu era. Benny is a liberal. In such a situation, there is possibility of many disputes over future policies in this coalition government.
Get to know Benny Gantz
Gantz is the former army chief. He resorted to both right-wing and Liberal policies to defeat Netanyahu. During the elections he continued to accuse Netanyahu of corruption. It also promised that they would not form a government with Netanyahu. Now this promise has been broken in the name of the country. Beni says- In the Corona era, the country needs a stable government.
Changes in Israel’s policies are possible
According to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Israeli politics was still based on religious and nationalism. In the new government, the right-wing and conservative parties that form the Likud Party coalition have not found a place. This will reduce their representation in the policies of the country. At the same time, Benny comes from the Liberal camp. In such a situation, major changes are possible in the politics of Israel by their becoming partners in power.
Relations with India
Prime Minister Modi and Netanyahu have established close ties by visiting each other’s countries. Netanyahu also used posters of Modi and Trump in his election campaign. Modi has made India’s relations with Israel more transparent by balancing its relations with Palestine. Both countries have benefitted from bilateral relations in trade, investment, IT, high technology and defense sectors.
Israel is India’s third-largest defense partner. These relationships with any new government are unlikely to be affected. Gantz also has an image as a supporter of India.