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Israel’s acting Prime Minister Bennett to withdraw from politics

After the failure of his eight-party government, Israel's Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has announced his retirement from politics.

Tel Aviv, 29 June 2022 (dpa/MIA) – After the failure of his eight-party government, Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has announced his retirement from politics.

The 50-year-old will not run in the next election, Israeli media reported on Wednesday evening, citing his spokesman.

There had been speculation for days that the former head of government would leave politics. Bennett wanted to make a statement himself later in the evening.

Bennett, who comes from the nationalist religious camp, was in office as prime minister for only one year. His coalition no longer has a majority in parliament.

It has been expected for days that the Knesset would dissolve itself, paving the way for a new election. In the evening, however, further delays became apparent. The new election is expected to take place at the end of October or beginning of November. It would be the fifth in three and a half years.

Until a new government is in office, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid is to take over from Bennett as head of government. This rotation had already been in the coalition agreement. Bennett is to remain deputy prime minister for the time being.

In the upcoming new election, former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has been indicted for corruption, hopes to return to power.

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