Close to 40 per cent of voters in Israel’s parliamentary election had cast a ballot by 1200 GMT Tuesday, seven hours after polls opened and eight before they were slated to close.

The 38.3 per cent voter turnout is 4 per cent higher than the turnout at the same time in the previous elections in February 2009 and the highest since 1999, when over 40 per cent had cast ballots by 1200 GMT.

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