Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has fallen behind his main challenger in opinion polls ahead of next week’s Israeli election but still has an easier path to form a government that would keep him in power for a record fifth term.
Netanyahu, who has dominated Israeli politics for a generation, is fighting for his political survival against former top general Benny Gantz, a political novice.
The outcome is unlikely to be decided on election day, when voters cast ballots for party lists. No party has ever won an outright majority in the 120-seat parliament, meaning days or even weeks of coalition negotiations will lie ahead.
And looming criminal indictments against Netanyahu, who has denied any wrongdoing in three cases of alleged bribery and fraud, could cloud his political future and that of any government he might head, possibly leading to a new election.
On Friday, the last day polling is allowed, Gantz’s centrist Blue and White party was projected to take 30 seats, more than the 26 forecast for Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud, according to a poll in Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper
Ten and thousands of Hong Kong protesters flood city streets in largest rally in weeks
Source: AFP- A sea of democracy activists flooded the streets of Hong Kong Sunday in a defiant show to the city’s leaders that their movement still pulls wide public support, despite mounting violence and increasingly stark warnings from Beijing.
Hundreds of thousands of protesters carrying umbrellas poured across the heart of Hong Kong island defying torrential rain and a police order not to march from a park where they had gathered earlier for a rally.
Weeks of demonstrations have plunged the financial hub into crisis, with images of masked black-clad protesters engulfed by tear gas during street battles against riot police stunning a city once renowned for its stability.
Sunday’s action, which organisers the Civil Human Rights Front said drew more than 1.7 million in the largest rally in weeks, was billed as a return to the “peaceful” origins of the leaderless protest movement.
“It’s been a long day and we’re very tired, but to see so many people out in the rain marching for Hong Kong gives strength to everyone,” said Danny Tam, a 28-year-old graphic designer.
The unprecedented political crisis was sparked by opposition to a plan to allow extraditions to the Chinese mainland.