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Israel's president chose Yair Lapid, a centrist politician and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's strongest rival, to try to form a new government on Wednesday.
But his path to success, and whether it could end years of political stalemate in the country, was still uncertain.
Neither Netanyahu, nor his rivals managed to secure a parliamentary majority in the most recent election on March 23.
It was the country’s fourth election since 2019 and all of them were inconclusive.
Netanyahu has been fighting to stay at the top, while also on trial for corruption charges, which he denies.
He had 28-days to put together a coalition, but it ran out overnight into Wednesday after he failed to agree terms with potential right-wing partners. President Reuven Rivlin, in a televised address, announced his choice of Lapid to form a new government.
He said the former finance minister had the pledged support of 56 of parliament's 120 members, still short of a majority.
Lapid also has 28 days to try to form a coalition.