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4 Nov, 2021 12:24

Israel's ex-PM Netanyahu raises hand by MISTAKE and votes with rivals

Israel's ex-PM Netanyahu raises hand by MISTAKE and votes with rivals

In a major vote that saw Israel pass a budget for the first time in over three years, former premier and now leader of the opposition Benjamin Netanyahu accidentally raised his hand in favor of a clause and voted with his rivals.

The Knesset passed the 2021 state budget in a close 61-59 marathon vote early on Thursday morning, sparking celebration and remarks from incumbent PM Naftali Bennett, who proclaimed that the momentous occasion was "a holiday for the state of Israel."

"After years of chaos – we formed a government, we overcame the Delta variant, and now, thank God, we passed a budget for Israel", Bennett Tweeted.

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Thursday's vote, which required the budget to be passed into law by November 14 to thwart the Knesset's automatic dissolution and the triggering of February elections, marks the first time Israel has had a new budget since March 2018.

Netanyahu, who is leader of the opposition and a veteran member of the Israeli assembly, however, mistakenly raised his hand in support of a budget clause with the coalition in the early hours of the morning. The former PM, was not the only senior Knesset member to slip up and vote with the coalition, with Shas leader Arye Deri also doing so.

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The government elected in June ousted Netanyahu from his prime ministerial post after a 12-year run in office, with Naftali Bennet, leader of the Yamina alliance and a key figure in the 'change coalition,' replacing him.

Israel entered a political crisis following elections in April 2019 after a right-wing party allied with the then-PM refused to sit with him in government due to his indictment on corruption-related charges.

The state saw four elections in this time period and the dissolution of parliament after it failed to pass a national budget.

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