Israel has a new Government
PM Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz announced on Mon. 20 April 2020 they had reached an agreement that will enable a new government to be formed. Three Israeli elections over the past months have each ended in a stalemate causing months of political paralysis and the threat of a fourth election in less than a year. In talks that have dragged on since March 2020 and been stalled several times, there was mounting concern that the collapse of their efforts to form a deal would force the country into still another election. According to the agreement, the three-year period has Netanyahu serving as prime minister for the first half, and Gantz taking the job for the second half. The deal required major compromise by both men. During three bitter campaigns over the past year, Gantz and his Blue and White party vowed never to serve in a government under Netanyahu so long as he faces a slew of corruption charges. But with the coronavirus crisis worsening, Gantz made an about-face late last month and accepted an offer from Netanyahu to pursue a joint government to deal with the pandemic. (VFI News)
For a year Israel has been unable to carry out important government procedures. Senior officials in the various ministries have said that new programs cannot be approved, serious processes cannot be conducted, and long-term plans cannot be adopted. The Ministry of the Economy cannot progress with reforms to lower the cost of living. The appointments of senior officials, too – judges, the police chief – are frozen. Everything has been on hold. Please intercede that Israel's new government will be strong, and that leaders and officials will be able to co-operate and move ahead with vital services and programs that have been stalled for months, as well as methods to deal with the coronavirus.