Israeli President Reuven Rivlin (R) and Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz attend a ceremony at the President's residence in Jerusalem, on Oct. 23, 2019. Benny Gantz, Israel's former military chief, was given on Wednesday the mandate to form a new government after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's failure to do so amid a political deadlock. (Photo by Gil Cohen Magen/Xinhua)
JERUSALEM, Oct. 23 (Xinhua) -- Benny Gantz, Israel's former military chief, was given on Wednesday the mandate to form a new government after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's failure to do so amid a political deadlock.
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin officially tasked Gantz, leader of the centrist Blue and White party, with forming a new government.
Speaking in a broadcast ceremony, Rivlin urged Gantz to "compromise" and form a unity government to avoid another round of elections.
Gantz will have 28 days, starting Thursday, to present his government.
Gantz called for "national reconciliation" and reiterated his promise to establish a "liberal unity government" without radical and religious parties.
"I will work for all the people of Israel ... a government that will push for peace and will know how to deal decisively with every enemy," he said.
"Everyone is expecting that we will put an end to this political chaos," Gantz noted, referring to the political paralysis since the closely-fought elections on Sept. 17 in which no party won enough votes to form a majority coalition in the 120-seat parliament.
Gantz said he intends to meet with all the parties in the parliament.
A first meeting with Netanyahu's Likud party was scheduled for Thursday afternoon, a Likud spokesman confirmed.
Netanyahu failed to form a coalition government following the April elections, which led to the second elections in September.
Gantz is the first in 11 years that received a mandate to form an Israeli government that could end Netanyahu's record-breaking term in office.