Ambassador to New Zealand Shemi Tzur won the distinction this year of being the first to vote in the upcoming elections, casting his ballot at the Israeli Embassy in Wellington on Thursday.

The embassy was one of 95 consulates and embassies where balloting took place on Thursday. Consulates in Los Angeles and San Francisco will conclude the overseas voting some 30 hours after Tzur cast his ballot.

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Israelis representing the Foreign Ministry, IDF, Jewish Agency and other government agencies abroad – and their families – have the right to vote. There are some 4,500 eligible voters overseas.

The most active polling place abroad is New York, where some 700 Israelis have the right to vote.

The votes are sealed in a double envelope and sent back to Israel via diplomatic post, to be opened and counted on Election Day, January 22.

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