TEL AVIV — Israel’s fourth election in two years has ended in another stalemate, with neither Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor his opponents able to win a parliamentary majority, according to final results released Thursday by the Israeli election authority.
The results set the stage for weeks or even months of protracted coalition negotiations that many analysts expect may fail, prompting yet another election in late summer.
The results, though final, are not yet official since they have yet to be formally presented to the country’s largely ceremonial president, Reuven Rivlin. That will happen next Wednesday, a spokesman for the central elections committee said.
But the count confirms earlier projections that Mr. Netanyahu’s alliance of right-wing and religious parties won 52 seats, nine short of an overall majority. A heterogeneous collection of centrist, left-wing, right-wing and Arab opposition parties won 57.
Islamist Arab party Raam, and the right-wing Yamina — won four and seven seats respectively and will be the focus of competing attempts by Mr. Netanyahu and the leader of the opposition, Yair Lapid, to form a coalition.
confronting vital questions about how to reform their election system and mend deep social divides.
After two elections in 2019, no one was able to piece together a majority coalition and form a government. After the 2020 contest, Mr. Netanyahu and some of his adversaries entered into an unwieldy coalition government that could not agree on a budget, forcing the latest election.
The continued stalemate leaves Mr. Netanyahu in power as a caretaker prime minister, even as he stands trial on corruption charges that he denies. The election upended the political map, dividing voters less by political ideology than by their attitude toward Mr. Netanyahu and his decision to run despite being under indictment.