April 10, 2019 / 4:45 PM / a month ago

Netanyahu's main election challenger concedes election defeat

Benny Gantz, head of Blue and White party, prepares to huddle with his party candidates Yair Lapid, Moshe Yaalon and Gaby Ashkenazi, following the announcement of exit polls in Israel's parliamentary election at the party headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel April 10, 2019. REUTERS/Amir Cohen

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s main election challenger, the Blue and White party, on Wednesday conceded defeat in Israel’s general election.

“We didn’t win in this round. We will make Likud’s life hell in the opposition,” Yair Lapid, number two in the centrist party led by former military chief Benny Gantz, said in a televised statement, referring to Netanyahu’s right-wing party.

Netanyahu looked set to be able to stay in power after Tuesday’s national ballot with the support of religious-rightist parties, although both Likud and Blue and White won the same number of seats in the 120-member parliament.

Reporting by Ron Bousso; Editing by Jeffrey Heller

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