Israel's 2 main political parties deadlocked after election
Israel's two main political parties were deadlocked on Wednesday after an unprecedented repeat election, with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu facing an uphill battle to hold on to his job.
The election's seeming political kingmaker, Avigdor Lieberman, said he'll insist upon a secular unity government between Netanyahu's Likud and Benny Gantz's Blue and White parties, who based on partial results are currently tied at 32 seats each out of 120 in parliament.
Lieberman said that was the "one and only option" on the table. That could spell serious trouble for Netanyahu's lengthy rule. Without Lieberman's endorsement, both parties appear to have fallen well short of securing a parliamentary majority with ideological allies.
"This Place": photos of Israel and the West Bank
With his photo project "This Place", Frederic Brenner sought to provide a different insight into Israel and the West Bank. As part of the project, 12 international photographers present landscape and portrait photos that aim to contribute to the observer's understanding of the conflict region. The exhibition runs at the Dox Center for Contemporary Art in Prague until 3 March 2015. By Felix Koltermann
In his project, the French photographer and initiator of "This Place", Frederic Brenner, combines portraits of families and individuals with landscape photography. His monograph "The Architecture of Fear and Desire" is published by Mack Books in London.
Over the course of a number of years, the American photographer Wendy Ewald held participative photography workshops with groups of different ages in Israel and the West Bank. A monograph of her work entitled "This Is Where I Live" will be published by Mack Books in April 2015.
The Czech filmmaker Martin Kollar assembled images from military training camps and research facilities in Israel to create strange, dream-like sequences of pictures. An artist book entitled "Field Trip" is available from Mack Books in London.
In his photographs, the Czech artist Joseph Koudelka examines the separation barrier between Israel and the West Bank, which he depicts in rough-grained, black-and-white panorama shots. His book "Wall" is published by Aperture in New York.
The Korean photographer Jungjin Lee depicts the landscape of the region in alienated, large-format panorama pictures. Her book "Unnamed Road" was published last November by Mack Books in London.
For "This Place", the French documentary photographer Gilles Peress, who has an in-depth knowledge of the region, focussed on documenting the daily life of Palestinians in the district of Silwan in East Jerusalem. A monograph of his work is planned for 2015.
The American photographer Fazal Sheikh photographed the Negev desert in southern Israel from the air for his monumental project "Desert Bloom". His pictures map the incursions of the local population into the landscape. "The Erasure Trilogy", the monograph on his project, will be published by Steidl Verlag in 2015.
For "This Place", the legendary American photographer Stephen Shore focussed on urban spaces and the landscape in Israel and the West Bank. His monograph on the project, "From Galilee to the Negev", is published by Phaidon in New York.
The American photographer Rosalind Solomon, at 80 the oldest participant in the project, travelled across Israel and the West Bank by bus in search of motifs for her portrait series. Her monograph, entitled "Them", is published by Mack Books in London.
In his project, the German artist Thomas Struth combines large-format landscape pictures with interior photos, both of places of religious significance and of Israel's high-tech research landscape. His accompanying monograph is published by Mack Books in London.
The English photographer Nick Waplington's contribution to the project consists of an archive of portraits and landscape photos from Jewish settlements in the West Bank. His monograph "Settlement" is published by Mack Books in London.
Gantz, a former military chief, has ruled out sitting with a Netanyahu-led Likud at a time when the prime minister is expected to be indicted on corruption charges in the coming weeks.
Israel's attorney general has recommended charging Netanyahu with bribery, fraud and breach of trust in three scandals, pending a hearing scheduled next month. A formal indictment would increase the pressure on Netanyahu to step aside if he does not have immunity.
The partial results released on Wednesday by the Central Election Commission were based on 35% of the vote counted. The three Israeli TV channels reported the same outcome, based on more than 90% of the vote counted, but did not explain the discrepancy with the commission's percentage.
According to the partial results, Likud with its natural allies of religious and ultra-nationalist parties mustered 56 seats - or five short of the needed majority.