By JOSEF FEDERMAN
JERUSALEM (AP) - 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.
In a statement released on Twitter, Netanyahu says that "against all odds" his Likud party and the nationalist camp secured a "great victory."
Initial exit polls showed Netanyahu's Likud Party deadlocked with the center-left Zionist Union.
But the results indicated that Netanyahu will have an easier time cobbling together a majority coalition with hard-line and religious allies.
Netanyahu said he had already begun to call potential partners.
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