The incumbent mayors of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem retained their positions in Israel’s municipal elections, it was announced early this morning.
Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai won with 53 per cent of the vote, beating his opponents Meretz MK Nitzan Horowitz and Aharon Meduel.
This will be Mr Huldai’s fourth term as mayor, having held the position for the past 15 years.
In Jerusalem, Nir Barkat won his second term as mayor with 51 per cent of the vote, after seeing off tough competition from his rival, Moshe Leon.
Mr Barkat, a secular leader, has been heavily opposed by strictly-Orthodox Jews in Jerusalem since winning his first term in 2008.
Former foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman and leader of the strictly -Orthodox Shas party Ariyeh Deri, had championed Mr Barkat’s opponent, Mr Leon, in the run-up to yesterday’s election.
After Mr Leon conceded defeat at 2.30am this morning, Mr Barkat wrote “Jerusalem won!” on his Facebook page.