Israel is a parliamentary democracy with legislative, executive and judicial branches. The head of the state is the president, whose duties are mostly ceremonial and formal; the office symbolizes the unity and sovereignty of the state. The Knesset, Israel’s legislative authority, is a 120-member unicameral parliament which operates in plenary session and through 14 standing committees. Its members are elected every four years in universal nationwide elections. The Government (cabinet of ministers) is charged with administering internal and foreign affairs. It is headed by a prime minister and is collectively responsible to the Knesset.