TEL AVIV, Sept. 18, 2019 (Xinhua) -- Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz gives a speech during a rally with supporters in Tel Aviv, Israel, Sept. 17, 2019. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's main challenger Benny Gantz said on Wednesday . Image Source: IANS News

Jerusalem, Sep 18 : Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is projected to have failed to muster a majority in a tough election that saw a virtual tie between Netanyahu's right-wing bloc and a centre-left grouping that would be led by former military chief Benny Gantz.

On Wednesday local TV channels projected Netanyahu trailing his rival Benny Gantz by just one seat, following a re-run general election.

Both Netanyahu and Gantz have said they can form a government, even though projections give neither man a majority in the new Parliament.

With 92 per cent of votes counted, the Prime Minister's Likud party is set to take a total of 32 seats, with its right-wing and ultra-Orthodox allies winning a further 24 seats, falling short of the 61 seats required for a majority in Israel's 120-seat legislature, media reports said.

Cobbling together a coalition would be key to forming a government, so, it might take days or weeks before it becomes clear whether the politician, admired by supporters as 'King Bibi' has been dethroned after a decade in power.

The results have raised questions about Netanyahu's political future: he is already facing a possible indictment over corruption charges, and his failure to lead Israel's right-wing camp to victory could further erode his position.

The centrist Blue and White is set to take 32 seats, and two left-wing parties are on course to win a total of 11 seats, media reports said.

-- The story has been published from a wire feed without any modifications to the text

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