DEBKAfile February 5, 2013, 6:07 PM (GMT+02:00)
Israel's newly-elected parliament held its first sitting in Jerusalem Tuesday. Of the 120 members, 48 first-time lawmakers were sworn in by President Shimon Peres, who said in his address that the Knesset does not stand above but represents the people, its mission to serve rather than rule. Doyen of the House, Binyamin Ben Eliezer, ceremonially opened the proceedings as acting Speaker. Both in their addresses emphasized the importance of addressing poverty and narrowing the gaps in Israeli society. The new House has a record number of female lawmakers.