Israeli Opposition Hails ‘End of Netanyahu’, PM’s Party Suspects ‘Coup’
REUTERS/ Ronen ZvulunMiddle East10:05 14.02.2018(updated 10:07 14.02.2018) Get short URL
On February 13, Israeli police recommended indicting the Prime Minister for bribery, fraud and breach of trust in two corruption cases, according to Haaretz.
Despite the fact that it’s the attorney general who will make a decision based on the recommendations, the opposition has already hailed the “end of Netanyahu.”
While Avi Gabbay, Labor Party Chairman, suggested that “the Netanyahu era was over, either at the ballot box or through investigation, Netanyahu’s fellow Likud party member, Tourism Minister Yariv Levin, said that the recommendation “exposed a coup against the voters.”
Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon also supported the Prime Minister in a post of Facebook, saying that only the attorney general could make a decision regarding an indictment and urged people to stop attacking the police and the rule of law, Haaretz reported.
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Naftali Bennet, Education Minister, abstained from response at this point, although said that the coalition wouldn’t dissolve over cigars and champagne.
Addressing the public, Benjamin Netanyahu said that all his life he served his country not for “cigars from a friend, not for positive media coverage,” but for love of country.
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“These recommendations have no weight in a democratic society,” Netanayhu said, adding that he will “continue to lead Israel responsibly and faithfully.”
“Great efforts have been taken to open no fewer than 15 investigations and probes to remove me from power. All of them started off as breaking news, some of them with shocking police recommendations,” said the prime minister. “Every single one of these attempts, without exception, led to nothing. I know the truth, so I can tell you, this time it will also lead to nothing. The authorities will not accept half of the police’s recommendations, and they will lead to nothing.”
The two cases are the so-called Case 1000, in which the Prime Minister is suspected of accepting overly expensive gifts from wealthy business leaders in exchange for advancing their interests, and the Case 2000, alleging that Netanyahu attempted to seal a deal with one of the largest Israeli newspapers to provide less critical coverage of him.