Israelis to vote today in fourth election in two years

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Tel Aviv [Israel], March 23 (ANI): Israelis will head to the polls for the fourth time in two years on Tuesday, hoping to end the political stalemate that began in December 2018 when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu initiated the first election.

6,578,084 Israelis are eligible to vote for the 38 parties running in 13,685 polling stations across the country, including 750 special polling stations for the sick and quarantined due to COVID-19, reported The Jerusalem Post.

With criticism between candidates left and right and unclear rotation options for Prime Minister, the latest opinion polls of local media indicate the election is unlikely to provide the country with much-needed stability and its outcome remains unpredictable.

The candidates spent the final day before the election in their strongholds.

Netanyahu campaigned at Jerusalem's Mahaneh Yehuda market, Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid was in Haifa, and Yamina head Naftali Bennett met with business owners in Rehovot.

New Hope leader Gideon Sa'ar prayed for success at the Western Wall, and the leaders of smaller parties called potential supporters along with telemarketers at their campaign headquarters, reported The Jerusalem Post.

Both Sa'ar and Bennett had made commitments more than a month ago to not sit in a Lapid-led government.

Exit polls will be broadcast at 10 pm Tuesday night on three television networks. But the real results from the normal polling stations will only be available on Wednesday. The final results will be out on March 31, reported The Jerusalem Post.

The 24th Knesset will be sworn in on April 6. President Reuven Rivlin is set to give a candidate a mandate to form a government the following day.

The series of elections to the Israeli Knesset has been ongoing since April 2019. Twice the winning parties failed to form a majority coalition and create a government. After the last election in March 2020, the government was formed but ceased to exist half a year later. (ANI)