Poll shows Sharon party ahead

The new centrist party of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has a commanding lead over the right-wing Likud party he dramatically left this week, an opinion poll has suggested.

    Sharon left Likud party this week

    Sharon's Kadima (Forward) movement would win 34 seats in the 120-member parliament against 28 seats for Labour and just 15 for the Likud, according to the poll commissioned by Israel's privately-run Channel 10 television on Thursday.

    It was the fourth poll since Sharon's resignation from the Likud earlier this week to vindicate his political gamble ahead of 28 March parliamentary elections.

    The others suggested Kadima would win between 30 and 33 seats, the Likud between 12 and 15 seats, a dramatic drop from its current 40, and Labour some 26 seats.

    The latest poll was conducted among a representative sample of 500 Israelis and had a margin of error of 4.5%.



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