After Israel's recent elections, yesterday marked the start of the Jewish state's 21st Knesset (parliament). Israel Hayom reports that the ceremony included remarks by Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, as well as the inauguration of PM Benjamin Netanyahu for his unprecedented fifth term leading Israel:
Israel’s 21st parliament (Knesset) held its opening session on Tuesday afternoon with the 120 lawmakers elected in the country’s April 9 national elections taking the oath of office.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was sworn in following his victory in the April 9 elections and will seek to form a governing coalition in the days ahead.
“Today we are overcome by the spirit of unity of the people we represent, the people who have decided in democratic elections and have imposed on us all the important mission to act on its behalf and for its sake,” Netanyahu said.
President Reuven Rivlin delivered a speech opening the new Knesset’s first plenary session, calling upon members to set aside political differences raised in the contentious election season...
“We have worked overtime in the service of delegitimization, hatred and execration. Now, it’s over. Enough. Time to rise up, to put down the cudgels of elections and clean up the mess,” he said.
He demanded that both the opposition and the ruling majority lay down their guards and unite in order to serve the Israeli public.
“One should lose gracefully and one should win gracefully. You are not in the opposition. You have held the keys of power and leadership for a long time. As such, your responsibility is to let up on eliminating your opponents, to let up on the feeling of being the victim, and to govern all the citizens and communities who live here with respect and with love,” Rivlin told Netanyahu and his allies.
He further called for unity across Israel’s demographic sectors.
“Now is the time to fight for our common home where secular, religious, ultra-Orthodox, Jews and Arabs – yes, they are called Arabs and there is nothing wrong with saying it – Right and Left, can find themselves equal,” he said...