PES calls on outgoing Prime Minister Netanyahu to acknowledge major setback of conservative policies


Achim Post and Shelly Yachimovich

Achim Post and Shelly Yachimovich

Held on the 22nd of January, the Israeli parliamentary elections ended in a close tie between right and left blocs with both winning 60 seats each. This result shakes the conservative status quo of the government and widens the political debate in the country.

PES General Secretary Achim Post stated: “The outcome of the parliamentary election has seen a striking decrease in the popularity of the current Prime Minister and a major setback for the conservative-led government. His conservative strategy has failed to address pressing socio-economic issues as well as peace with the Palestinians. The result must redefine the political landscape of Israel with a strong progressive influence”.

He added: “The PES welcomes the electoral gains by the Labour Party and Meretz following their strong campaign on social and economic issues. Their progressive programme is not afraid of tackling pressing concerns such as the peace process, concerns that every Israeli citizen shares but that the conservative coalition has systematically failed to address. This electoral result shows that progress is firmly gaining ground in Israel. The PES hopes that peace negotiations will be reopened soon in order to achieve a two-state solution”.

Two out of three Israelis voted in Tuesday's election (66.6%), a slightly higher proportion than in the previous two elections. Given the new composition of the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, negotiations are expected to last several weeks.