Hawkish Israeli legislator wins key party position

JERUSALEM (AP) — A hard-line Israeli legislator who opposes the creation of a Palestinian state has been voted into a key leadership position within the ruling Likud party.

Danny Danon was declared chairman of the Likud Central Committee late Sunday. Danon’s election reflects the rise of hawks, who reject the idea of a Palestinian state, within the party.

As committee leader, Danon could try to hamper Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s efforts to move ahead with a peace deal with the Palestinians. The committee does not have the power to completely thwart a deal, but its opposition could expose cracks in the party.

The Likud has traditionally opposed a Palestinian state alongside Israel. But some party moderates, including Netanyahu, have gradually come to the conclusion that its creation is necessary and inevitable.

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