Netanyahu rejects all charges, calls indictment ‘attempted coup’

November 22, 2019 by Arye Green -TPS
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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a public statement on Thursday after Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit charged him with bribery, fraud, and breach of trust, calling the indictment an “attempted coup against the prime minister.”

Benjamin Netanyahu . Photo: Esty Dziubov/TPS

Netanyahu accused the State Attorney’s Office of skewed judgment and alleged that they had ulterior motives.

“We need to investigate the investigators and the state prosecution which cooks up these tainted cases,” he said, adding that his indictment was “selective enforcement on steroids.”

“I dedicated my life for this country. I fought for it, got injured for it, paid a heavy price. But what happened in the tainted investigation of me, a process that included the manufacture of cases and making up of new crimes, reached a new high today. I hear it, this process doesn’t only horrify me, it horrifies many citizens in Israel. This tainted process raises harsh questions about police investigations and the public prosecution’s work,” Netanyahu alleged.

Netanyahu went on to say that the indictment was politically motivated and that he could have been forgiven if he had only joined the Israeli left.

“I too am human. Every day and every night they spill my blood and my family’s blood with unparalleled poisonous and evil rhetoric. I won’t lie, it’s hard. I was advised to put my head down and abandon my principles… But the feeling of truth and justice burn within me,” he said.

The long-awaited decision on Netanyahu’s indictment came at a particularly sensitive time politically, as the mandate to form a government was given to the Members of Knesset (MKs) for the first time in Israel’s history.

Netanyahu will have to decide if to voluntarily waive his immunity as an MK and face the legal battle as prime minister, or attempt to keep his immunity, a move that would require a majority in the Knesset.

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