Head of the Israel Beyteinu party Avigdor Liberman speaks with the media during a faction meeting in the Israeli parilament on November 20, 2019. Photo by Hadas Parush/FLASH90

 

Benny Gantz failed to form a government by Wednesday’s midnight deadline, leaving Israel facing a very realistic prospect of  holding a third election in less than a year.

“In the past 28 days, I have left no stone unturned, irrespective of how small, in my attempt to form a government that would bring to the state of Israel leadership with integrity, morality and values,” Gantz said, thanking President Reuven Rivlin for assisting his efforts.

“We have made great efforts toward forming a broad, liberal unity government … a government that will serve everyone – religious and secular, Jews and Arabs,” he added.

Later on Wednesday, Netanyahu urged Gantz to try to form a unity government, and added that he would not respond to accusations made by his opponent that his personal interests were placed before the country’s.

With decade-long Prime Minister Netanyahu and Gantz failing to form a government, and Avigdor Lieberman’s refusal to cooperate with either, citing numerous issues he has with the ultra-Orthodox parties, Israelis can expect a third round of elections in 2020.