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Peres gets election results, set to consult parties on PM

An election campaign in its style and content is a lesson in national democracy, PresidentShimon Peres said Wednesday after recieving the official results of the elections for the19th Knesset from Central Elections Committee chairman Justice Elayakim Rubinstein.
Peres said that now that he had the official results, he could begin consultations with thevarious political parties and hear their recommendations for prime minister.
He hoped that the person whom he tasks with forming a government will agree to take thechallenge. Peres explained that the law stipulates that he must enter into consultationswith the parties before making his decision. "I am fully aware of my responsibilities inthis regard" he said. "This is a very heavy responsibility and I intend to carry it out infull accordance with the law to facilitate a government that represents the will of the people. I see this as both a duty and a privilege," he said.
Rubinstein said that he was very pleased with the campaign that had been conducted to urge the public to exercise its right to vote, and although the turnout did not reach the 70percent it targeted, 68% was certainly a sign of progress.
Rubinstein regretted that during the election campaign there had been certain incidents ofracism which he termed a red alert. "There is no room for racism in Israel, which became asovereign state after the Holocaust," he said.
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