JERUSALEM – The Israeli parliament will hold a confidence vote Sunday on a coalition aiming to end Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s 12 consecutive years in power, speaker Yariv Levin said Tuesday.
“The debate and vote on the new government will take place Sunday, June 13, 2021 during a special session of parliament,” Levin, a Netanyahu ally, said in a statement.
If the pivotal vote confirms the fragile eight-party alliance it would spell the end of an era, after Netanyahu dominated Israeli politics for more than a decade pushing it firmly to the right.
The veteran incumbent has spent the past week trying to torpedo the motley alliance ranged against him, who are united only by hostility to his rule, and has urged right-wingers in its ranks to reject this “dangerous left-wing government”.
The anti-Netanyahu bloc includes three right-wing, two centrist and two left-wing parties, along with an Arab Islamic conservative party.
If the new government is confirmed Netanyahu’s right-wing opponent Naftali Bennett would serve as premier for the next two years, after which the “change” coalition’s centrist architect, Yair Lapid, would take over.
Bitter recriminations within the Israeli right and far right prompted Israeli security services to issue a rare warning against incitement online, which Netanyahu’s opponents say was a warning to the prime minister.
Netanyahu has been trying to thwart the coalition by peeling off right-wing defectors uncomfortable with working with left-wing and Arab lawmakers.
Alarm has grown about angry rallies by his Likud party supporters, including protests outside the homes of right-wing lawmakers accused of “betrayal” for joining the coalition. Security has been stepped up for some of the MPs.