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AP
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Britain’s government is dealing with another boozy scandal after the deputy chief whip resigned from his post following a drunken incident this week. Prime Minister Boris Johnson faced calls on Friday to expel Chris Pincher from the Conservative Party. Pincher's role as deputy chief whip was to maintain discipline among Tory members of Parliament. His letter of resignation on Thursday added to the prime minister's recent troubles. Johnson last month survived a no-confidence vote triggered by investigations into parties held in government buildings when coronavirus lockdowns prohibited group gatherings. A Conservative lawmaker also resigned for watching pornography on his phone in the House of Commons, and the Tories lost two seats in special elections.

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Israel’s parliament has voted to dissolve itself, sending the country to the polls for the fifth time in less than four years. The Knesset voted on Thursday in favor of disbanding, just over a year after the government was formed. Yair Lapid, Israel’s foreign minister and architect of the outgoing coalition government, will become the country’s caretaker prime minister at midnight. He will take over from Naftali Bennett, whose ideologically diverse government ousted longtime leader Benjamin Netanyahu after 12 years in power. The coalition of ideologically diverse parties was the first to include an Arab faction.

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Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett says he will not run in upcoming elections, after he led a broad but fragile coalition government that came unraveled barely a year after taking office. The government announced last week that it will dissolve the Knesset ahead of elections expected this fall. But the voting required for dissolution has been bogged down by disputes with the opposition. In a brief statement Wednesday Bennett confirmed that he was stepping away from politics, saying he had tried as prime minister “to care for all citizens, regardless of who they voted for.”

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Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has told lawmakers in Edinburgh that she plans to hold a fresh referendum on Scottish independence on Oct. 19, 2023. That's despite U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying it wasn’t the right time for such a vote. Scottish voters rejected independence in the 2014 referendum. The U.K.-wide government headed by Johnson has said the issue was settled in the 2014 vote. Scotland’s government requires a special order from Johnson to legally hold a referendum. Sturgeon said she will ask the U.K. Supreme Court to rule on the Scottish government’s right to hold the vote if Johnson does not give the go-ahead.

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s leadership of the Conservative party has suffered a heavy double blow as voters rejected the Tories in two special elections. In the southwestern constituency of Tiverton and Honiton, the Liberal Democrats overturned a 24,000 Conservative majority to win, while the main opposition Labour Party reclaimed Wakefield in northern England. The contests, triggered by the resignation of Conservatives hit by scandals, offered voters the chance to give their verdict on the prime minister just weeks after 41% of his own MPs cast their ballots against him. The party’s chairman quit after the results early Friday, saying the party “cannot carry on with business as usual.”

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The leaders of Israel’s broad-based but severely weakened coalition government have thrown in the towel this week, after barely 12 months in office. They plan to dissolve parliament and set the stage for elections — the fifth in 3 1/2 years. Why does this keep happening? The simplest answer is that Israel is deeply — and almost evenly — divided over whether Benjamin Netanyahu should be prime minister. But it’s also because Israel’s political system consists of an ideologically diverse array of parties that have to form alliances — and sometimes break them — to get what they want.

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In a 10-year political career, Yair Lapid has transformed himself from upstart political novice to feisty opposition leader to the savvy operator who toppled longtime leader Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Next week, he is expected to assume his biggest role yet — as Israel’s new prime minister. Following the government’s decision Monday to dissolve parliament, Lapid is set to take office as caretaker prime minister until elections in the fall. His swearing-in ceremony begins a critical period for Lapid, who will try to convince the public that he is worthy of leading the nation as he takes on a resurgent Netanyahu.

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An Israeli Cabinet minister says the country's outgoing coalition government will fast-track a bill this week to dissolve parliament, setting up the country for its fifth elections in three years. Welfare Minister Meir Cohen told Israeli public broadcaster Kan on Tuesday that the coalition would bring the bill to a preliminary vote the following day. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said on Monday that he would disband his alliance of eight diverse parties and send the country to the polls. New elections — the country's fifth in just over three years — are likely to be scheduled for October and raise the possibility that longtime leader Benjamin Netanyahu, now opposition leader, will be able to stage a comeback.

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Israel’s weakened coalition government has announced that it will dissolve parliament and call new elections. The move sets the stage for the possible return to power of former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu or another period of prolonged political gridlock. The election will be Israel’s fifth in three years. It will put the polarizing Netanyahu, who has been the opposition leader for the past year, back at the center of the political universe. The previous four elections focused on Netanyahu’s fitness to rule while facing a corruption investigation. Opinion polls project him as the front-runner, but it is far from certain that his Likud party can secure the required parliamentary majority to form a new government.

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French President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist alliance is projected to lose its majority despite getting the most seats in the final round of parliamentary elections. The far-right National Rally appears to have made big gains. The projections are based on partial results from SUnday's vote and indicate that Macron’s candidates will win between 230 and 250 seats. That is much less than the 289 required to have a straight majority in the National Assembly. The situation is highly unusual in France and is expected to make Macron’s political maneuvering difficult if the projections are borne out. A new coalition made up of the hard left, the Socialists and the Greens is expected to become the main opposition force with about 140 to 180 seats.