Live updates: Israel-Hamas war in Gaza, Rafah offensive draws global outcry – CNN

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Israeli war cabinet member Benny Gantz seen on March 5, 2024, at the U.S. State Department in Washington, D.C. Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

Israel’s National Unity party, led by war cabinet member Benny Gantz, has proposed a bill to dissolve the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, and trigger new elections in the fall. 

“This is a continuation of the initiative led by the chairman of the State Camp, Minister Benny Gantz, to hold elections with broad consensus by October, one year after the massacre,” Gantz’s press office said in a statement. 

Knesset member Pnina Tamano-Shata submitted the bill on Thursday. 

“October 7th is a disaster that requires us to regain the people’s trust and establish a broad and stable unity government that can lead us safely through the enormous challenges in security, the economy, and above all, in Israeli society. Submitting the bill now will allow us to advance it further in the current session,” Tamano-Shata said in a statement. 

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By proposing the bill, the National Unity Party members will now have the opportunity to table it during the Knesset’s summer session in which they will hold a vote to decide whether to dissolve parliament in September and hold fresh elections in October. 

Some context: Currently, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu leads a 64-member governing coalition that gives him a majority in the 120-seat Knesset.

While Gantz had performed well in polls from earlier this year, recently his favorability has dropped, according to CNN global affairs analyst Barak Ravid. 

Gantz has repeatedly criticized Netanyahu’s leadership throughout the conflict in Gaza.  Earlier this month, Gantz threatened to withdraw from the government if the war cabinet did not lay out a plan by June 8 to free the hostages and eliminate Hamas.

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