In a different league: Modi features in Netanyahu’s campaign as Israel heads to snap polls in September

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Updated: July 29, 2019 1:15:51 PM

Just eight days ahead of the Israel polls, Netanyahu will visit India on September 9 to meet Narendra Modi.

A banner showing is Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Likud Party’s headquarters in Tel Aviv. (PTI Photo)

Ahead of the snap polls in Israel on September 17, election banners of Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi have come up in Tel Aviv. Netanyahu’s Likud party has also put up similar banners featuring US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in a bid to win votes. The banners on Likud party’s headquarters in Tel Aviv have a caption on top in Hebrew which reads “Netanyahu (in a) different league”.

Netanyahu created history on July 20 by becoming the longest serving Israeli Prime Minister, surpassing Israel’s first premier David Ben-Gurion. He is expected to face a tough challenge when Israel goes to snap polls on September 17. Most opinion polls predict a bleak outcome for the ruling Likud party. To overcome this, Netanyahu’s election campaign is focussed on highlighting his close chemistry with global leaders. The idea is to project him as a leader of unmatched stature who is essential for the country’s security.

Israel went to polls on April 9, where Netanyahu failed to win a clear majority and was unable to form a coalition government. In May, Israeli lawmakers had voted 74-45 in favour of dissolving the 21st Knesset (Parliament) and hold an unprecedented re-elections on September 17.

Just eight days ahead of the polls, the Israeli premier will visit India on September 9 to meet Modi. Netanyahu had last travelled to India in January 2018, while PM Modi visited Tel Aviv in 2017. Modi become the first Indian PM to visit the Jewish state and was received by Netanyahu at the airport. A picture of two of them strolling barefoot at the Olga beach in northern Israel during Modi’s visit to the country in 2017 created waves with talks of ‘bromance’ in Israel.

The Israeli press has often discussed the close ties that Netanyahu shares with Modi, Trump and Putin. Both Trump and Puting had announced major concessions ahead of the April elections to support Netanyahu’s campaign.

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