STORY: "We have won a huge vote of confidence from the people of Israel," a smiling Netanyahu told supporters at his election headquarters in Jerusalem. "We are on the brink of a very big victory," he told the cheering crowd.
Lifted by a strong showing from his far-right allies, Netanyahu, who is on trial for corruption he denies, was on course for a return to power, according to Israeli television exit polls late on Tuesday (November 1), which predicted his bloc of four parties taking 62 of the Knesset's 120 seats.
A final result is not expected until later in the week.
Netanyahu's record 12-year consecutive reign ended in June 2021 when centrist Yair Lapid managed to stitch together a fragile alliance of liberals, rightists and an Arab party for the first time and which unravelled a year into its rule.