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April 12, 2019

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Palestinians indifferent to Israeli vote

As some leaders around the world on Wednesday congratulated Israel’s right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his likely re-election after tight parliamentary elections, Syria and Palestine showed little interest in the anticipated outcome.

“The results haven’t been finalized yet but I don’t think the elections would have any impact on the regional issues if the party that is running against Netanyahu doesn’t oppose him in politics,” Hmaidi Abdullah, a political expert said.

“So even if someone other than Netanyahu won the elections, there would be no difference in dealing with the regional issues as both candidates have the same stance toward the Golan Heights,” Abdullah added.

The remarks came after 97 percent of the votes were counted, indicating that the long-serving prime minister was in a tie with his main rival, Benny Gantz.

However, right-wing parties secured an overwhelming majority, meaning that Netanyahu was highly likely to form Israel’s next governing coalition.

Hussam Shuaib, another political expert, said that “the change in names of the Israeli government has not changed the essence of dealing with the regional issues particularly in Syria.”

“But I can say that US President Donald Trump has exerted big efforts to promote Netanyahu as the upcoming prime minister,” the expert added.

Shuaib said that the attempt to gain more support for Netanyahu was felt when Trump moved the US embassy to Jerusalem, which was followed by the US recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Syrian Golan Heights.

“I think that the latest move pleased Israel but in reality, the US cannot hold the burden of such a decision,” Shuaib noted.

Palestinian officials said that they do not count on the results of Israel’s parliamentary elections and are not betting on their results.

“The Palestinian side does not count on the parliamentary elections in Israel,” Ahmed Majdalani, a member of Executive Committee of Palestine Liberation Organization, told Xinhua.

Nabil Shaath, adviser to the Palestinian president, told Xinhua that the Israeli elections “are different from any previous elections because of the dominance of the far-right parties of the scene.”


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