Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has claimed a “BIG win” in a vote that challenged his leadership of the Likud party.
Challenger Gideon Saar admitted defeat, saying he would now back Mr. Netanyahu in a general election due in March
Local Media suggested Netanyahu had won more than 70% of the vote
About 49% of Likud’s 116,000 eligible members voted on Thursday, party figures show.
The internal party vote was seen as a test of Mr. Netanyahu’s hold on power at a time of mounting difficulties.
70 Years Old Benjamin Netanyahu, is faced with trial on bribery and corruption charges, as well as a third national election within a year.
Previous elections held in April and September saw Likud deadlocked with the centrist Blue and White party – with neither able to form a government.
Netanyahu, who is the country’s longest serving leader, is facing mounting scrutiny after being indicted in three corruption cases last month.
He denies wrongdoing and claims the charges are a politically motivated “witch-hunt” against him.