On Tuesday, February 5, 2013, at the opening session of the 19th Knesset, the
incoming 120 Knesset members will declare their allegiance in the presence of
President Shimon Peres. Binyamin Ben Eliezer, the most senior of the MKs to be
sworn in to the 19th Knesset, will act as Speaker until the new Knesset elects
its Speaker. Ben Eliezer: "I am one of the last of the generation that came
after the founders of the state, and I have seen and am seeing a changing of the
According to tradition, President Peres will arrive at the Knesset
accompanied by horsemen and motorcyclists. He will review the honor guard
accompanied by outgoing Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin. A fanfare played by the
IDF military band will accompany President Peres' entry into the hall, where he
will open the session. Peres will address the plenary of the 19th Knesset, afer
which MK Ben Eliezer will declare allegiance to the State of Israel, followed by
all 120 Knesset members.
Over a third of the 19th Knesset members - 48 - are new, the largest turnover
among MKs after a single election. The 19th Knesset will include 27 women, and
the average age is young. Seating arrangements will be temporary until
the formation of a new government determines the alignment of the parties.
On February 2, President
Peres assigned the task of forming a government to Benjamin Netanyahu, who
has a period of 28 days to form a government. The President may extend the term
by an additional period of time, not exceeding 14 days.
When a government has been formed, the designated prime minister presents it
to the Knesset within 45 days of publication of election results in the official
gazette. At this time, he announces its composition, the basic guidelines of its
policy and the distribution of functions among its ministers. The prime minister
then asks the Knesset for an expression of confidence. The government is
installed when the Knesset has expressed confidence in it by a majority of 61
Knesset members, and then the ministers assume office.