UPDATE - Netanyahu officially tasked with forming Israeli government

UPDATE - Netanyahu officially tasked with forming Israeli government

Netanyahu and his right-wing bloc win majority in Knesset


JERUSALEM (AA) – Israeli opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu was officially tasked on Sunday with forming the upcoming government, according to Israeli media.

Netanyahu received the mandate to form the government after meeting with President Isaac Herzog, who completed three days of consultations with leaders of political parties, Haaretz reported.

Netanyahu, the leader of the right-wing Likud Party, said he will be a prime minister for "all of Israel’s citizens, without exception."

He said he will do "everything to ensure a stable, successful government — a responsible government," adding that he intends "to be the prime minister of everyone — those who voted for me and those who did not vote for me. That is my responsibility as the prime minister of Israel."

Herzog, for his part, reminded Netanyahu that there is no place for critical mistakes and that "every government must behave with immense caution on matters of fateful importance for our existence."

Netanyahu, a former prime minister, and his right-wing bloc won 64 seats in the 120-seat Knesset (Israel’s parliament), securing him an outright majority to form the government.

Netanyahu has 28 days to form the government. In case he failed, to do so, he may receive additional 14 days to complete the task of forming the government.

* Ahmed Asmar contributed to this news from Ankara.

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