Poll: 50% favor Gantz, 29% Netanyahu amid 42-day Gaza siege

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TEL AVIV — According to a recent opinion poll published in an Israeli newspaper and conducted by Maariv in collaboration with the Laza Research Center, it shows that Israelis do not want Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with growing calls for his removal from office in the midst of the ongoing 42-day siege on Gaza. The survey reveals that when respondents were asked about their preference for prime minister between Benny Gantz and Netanyahu, the results were as follows:

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The survey also shows a decline for the Likud party, led by Netanyahu, to 17 seats in the Knesset, down from 18 in the last election. In contrast, Gantz's party gained 42 seats, a record since its formation, Khaberni reported.

Regarding Netanyahu's successor within the Likud, the survey surprisingly indicates that the former head of Mossad, Yossi Cohen, has twice the chance compared to the current Defense Minister, Yoav Galant, with only 12 percent.

This turnaround is explained by Netanyahu's recent dismissal of Cohen, especially after excluding him from the negotiations on a prisoner exchange with Hamas.

The survey suggests that the opposition will become the ruling coalition in Israel with a majority exceeding 70 seats out of 120 in the parliament.

It also indicates that the parties forming the government coalition lost the necessary votes for a majority, securing only 42 seats, down from 64 in the last elections.

Many blame Netanyahu for the failure against Hamas, but calls for his dismissal have even emerged amid the ongoing conflict.

Opposition leader Yair Lapid recently called for Netanyahu's resignation and removal from power without resorting to elections during the war. He proposed a new government led by someone from within the Likud party.