On June 13th, Israel’s 36th government was sworn in by the Knesset. The new coalition was narrowly approved and will be led by Naftali Bennett as the 13th Prime Minister of Israel. Yair Lapid was sworn in as the alternate prime minister, with plans to rotate to prime minister in two years.
The confirmation ends two years of political gridlock in which Israelis went to the polls four times. It also brings to an end the twelve-year tenure of outgoing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who remains as Leader of the Opposition.
Jewish Federations of North America welcomed the new government with the following statement:
The Jewish Federations of North America congratulates incoming Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and incoming Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid on forming a new government. JFNA also sends greetings and best wishes to all the party leaders and ministers who have joined the coalition.
JFNA’s Chair of the Board of Trustees Mark Wilf said, “JFNA sends Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and the entire incoming Israeli government a warm embrace as they embark on this new chapter in modern Israeli history. Federations are eager to work closely with the incoming government and look forward to working together to build bridges between Israel and global Jewry. At the same time, we send our sincere gratitude to outgoing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his government for their many years of dedicated service to the State of Israel and for their role in promoting cooperation and friendship with North American Jewry.”
Eric Fingerhut, JFNA’s president and CEO said, “We were fortunate to meet with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Defense Minister Benny Gantz, and many other senior officials of the new government during our trip to Israel just two weeks ago. Those meetings left us confident that the new government will work closely with us to strengthen Israel and the entire Jewish People. We welcome the stability that a new government will bring to Israel. We are also particularly pleased to see an Arab party join the ruling coalition, which is not just unprecedented but also symbolizes ever-greater integration of the Arab sector into Israeli shared society. We are excited to begin working with the new government and wish all these leaders strength and success.”