June 11 (UPI) — Yamina Party leader Naftali Bennett will take over as Israel’s leader Sunday in the first substantial leadership change in the past two decades.
Benjamin Netanyahu, the country’s longest serving Prime Minister since 2009, was unsuccessful in his attempts over more than two years to form a ruling coalition. He will relinquish the role amid corruption inquiries.
“The Israeli public deserves a functioning and responsible government which places the good of the country at the top of its agenda. That’s what this unity government has been formed to do. All the partners in this government are committed, first and foremost, to the people of Israel,” Lapid said.
Unlikely coalition members including the United Arab List — the only Arab party to take part in national politics since 1974 — came together to oust Netanyahu.
The coalition will get to work strengthen the nation’s healthcare sector, supporting religious structures and fighting crime in the Arab sector.
Netanyahu has been connected to many scandals over his tenure and earlier this year underwent a corruption inquiry over accusations he purchased favorable media coverage of his administration.