Israel's outgoing PM Bennett thanks Modi for commending him for being India's 'true friend'

Jerusalem: Israel's outgoing premier Naftali Bennett on Friday thanked his "dear friend" Prime Minister Narendra Modi for commending him for being "a true friend to India".

Israel's Parliament voted Thursday to dissolve itself and send the country to the polls in November for the fifth time in less than four years. Yair Lapid, Israel's foreign minister and architect of the outgoing coalition government, took over the prime ministership from Bennett to became the country's caretaker prime minister just after midnight on Friday.

"Thank you His Excellency @naftalibennett for being a true friend of India. I cherish our fruitful interactions and wish you success in your new role," Modi said in a tweet.

In response, Bennett tweeted, "Thank you my dear friend. To a long and strong friendship."

According to The Times of Israel newspaper, Bennett announced Wednesday night that he will not be running in the upcoming elections and will be stepping back from political life.

Modi also congratulated Lapid for assuming the premiership of Israel and said he looks forward to furthering the bilateral strategic partnership as the two countries celebrate 30 years of full diplomatic relations.

"Warm wishes and heartiest congratulations to His Excellency @yairlapid for assuming the premiership of Israel. I look forward to continue furthering our strategic partnership as we celebrate 30 years of full diplomatic relations," he tweeted.

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