TEL AVIV (Realist English). Benjamin Netanyahu has formed the most right-wing government in Israel’s history. This is reported by the France 24 TV channel with reference to analysts.
Likud MP and former head of the Southern Command of the armed Forces Yoav Gallant became the Minister of Defense.
Likudniks Eli Cohen and Yariv Levin received the portfolios of Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Justice. Bezalel Smotrich will become the new Israeli Finance minister and will be responsible for managing the West Bank. Itamar Ben-Gvir, the far-right leader of the Jewish Power party, becomes Minister of Public Security.
Haim Katz will be head of the Ministry of Tourism, and Yoav Kisch became the Minister of Education. Amir Ohana, Netanyahu’s closest ally, was appointed speaker of the Knesset.
The 73-year-old politician continues to fight corruption charges in court. Experts interviewed by France 24 believe that Netanyahu made huge concessions to the far right in the hope of obtaining judicial immunity or canceling the corruption trial. He is charged with bribery, fraud and abuse of trust.
The Likud leader has held the post of prime minister longer than any modern Israeli politician – a record 12 years from 2009 to 2021 and three years in the late 1990s.
After the elections on November 1, Netanyahu entered into negotiations with ultra-orthodox and far-right parties, including the formation of Smotrich’s Religious Zionism and Ben-Gvir’s Jewish Force. Together, the coalition has 64 of the 120 seats in parliament. According to Denis Sharbit, a professor of political science at the Open University of Israel, Smotrich and Ben-Gvir “strongly crave power”, their priority remains the expansion of settlements in the West Bank.