Jerusalem, Oct. 10 (Xinhua-ANI): After a four-year tenure, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday announced that early general elections would be held, but did not specify an exact date.
Netanyahu, who made the announcement during a prime time press conference, decided to go to elections after failing to achieve a majority within his 66-seat coalition to pass next year’s budget.
He said elections for the 19th Knesset (parliament) are to be held as early as possible in the beginning of next year.
The mandate of the current government will end at the end of 2013, and the elections, originally, would take place in October 2013.
“Israel would be better served with an intensive three-month election campaign,” Netanyahu said in brief comments, and did not take questions from reporters. He then left the podium.
Netanyahu has already met with President Shimon Peres, Knesset (parliament) Speaker Reuven Rivlin, and expressed his desire to disperse the legislature and go to early elections, likely in February, according to Israel Radio. He also met with a series of coalition partners earlier Tuesday.
Local political analysts suggest that the prime minister is trying to take advantage of his party’s good standing in the polls and would like to prevent his numerous political rivals from gathering electoral momentum. (Xinhua-ANI)