Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has declared victory after a tight national election appeared to give him the upper hand in forming the country's next coalition government.
n a statement released on Twitter, Mr Netanyahu says that "against all odds" his Likud Party and the nationalist camp secured a "great victory".
Initial exit polls showed Likud deadlocked with the centre-left Zionist Union led by Isaac Herzog.
But the results indicated that Mr Netanyahu will have an easier time cobbling together a majority coalition with hard-line and religious allies.
Mr Netanyahu said he had already begun to call potential partners.
Exit polls conducted by the country's three major TV stations gave mixed results.
Two polls showed the parties deadlocked with 27 seats each, and a third gave Likud a slight lead of 28-27.
All showed the centrist newcomer Moshe Kahlon with enough seats to determine who will be the next prime minister.