Thursday, 22 Aug 2019 - 21 of Av, 5779

Israeli President Reuven Rivlin issues call for unity as he entrusts Benjamin Netnayahu with forming Israel’s 35th government

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”The iron wall should be between us and our enemies, not inside our own home, not between us. Now is the time to stop fighting ‘them’ and to start fighting to regain belief in ‘us’.”

JERUSALEM—Israeli President Reuven Rivlin issued a call for unity as he entrusted Benjamin Netayahu with forming Israel’s 35th government.

He said: “This was a tough election campaign. Things were said that should not have been said, from all sides. Not in a democratic state and not in the Jewish state. The iron wall should be between us and our enemies, not inside our own home, not between us. Now is the time to stop fighting ‘them’ and to start fighting to regain belief in ‘us’. To fight for our home, a place where secular, religious and ultra-Orthodox, Jews and Arabs, left and right can find their place – as equal partners. All parties in the Knesset are responsible for this, and you above all, Mr Prime Minister, bear this responsibility.”

He told Netanyahu : ‘’For the fifth time, you have secured the support of this dear people who lives on its own land. You have the responsibility to form a government at a time when it and the incoming Knesset face weighty responsibilities, coalition and opposition together.’’

He added : ‘’Strengthening and developing Israel’s security and diplomatic standing in the face of challenges on different fronts, and also in light of the opportunities we may face. In addition, narrowing and closing the gaps in our society. The strength of our economy and our society is the key to our strength in security and diplomacy. Only an Israel that is strong from within projects strength outwards. And also, healing the wounds and fissures that have opened between us.’’

Once the president has entrusted a Knesset member with the task of forming a government, that candidate has 28 days to do so, according to the Basic Law. If required, the president is authorized to grant an extension of up to 14 additional days to the candidate.

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