Yochanan Danino GOOD 311.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Southern District head Cmdr. Yochanan Danino will be the next chief of the
Israel Police, Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch announced on Sunday
at a press conference in Jerusalem.
Aharonovitch said that he hoped his
decision would “bring calm and stabilize the police following recent turmoil,”
referring to weeks of scandal and investigations that had frozen the selection
Aharonovitch to announce new top cop amid criticism
State Comptroller clears Danino for police chief race
The minister said he had consulted with experts, former police
chiefs and former public security ministers before coming to his decision, which
came after Attorney- General Yehuda Weinstein cleared Danino of any wrongdoing
in two complaints lodged against him.
Before the announcement,
Aharonovitch gathered the leading candidates, Danino, Tel Aviv Police chief
Shahar Ayalon and Deputy Insp.-Gen. Ilan Franco in a conference
room at his ministry and notified them of his decision. During the meeting, the
candidates’ cellphones were reportedly taken away to prevent leaks to the
Aharonovitch described Danino as an able, veteran officer with
rich investigative experience who is up to facing the many challenges of law
enforcement in Israel.
The minister will bring his appointment before the
Turkel Committee for senior appointments, in line with legal
Aharonovitch praised outgoing Insp.-Gen. David Cohen, whom he
described as one of the best police chiefs in the Israel Police’s history,
adding that he will “enjoy my full support until his last day of
There has been tension between the two men in recent years, but
they appeared to be on better terms now.
Aharonovitch did not answer
questions regarding objections to Danino’s appointment lodged with the High
Court of Justice recently by the Ometz good government
According to the petition, Weinstein decided not to wait
for the completion of a state comptroller investigation into Danino.
court dismissed the petition on Sunday, noting that the state comptroller has
until May, when Danino takes over the post, to complete his
But the unprecedented controversy surrounding the race for
police chief may not end so quickly, after sources in State Comptroller Micha
Lindenstrauss’s office criticized Weinstein for “hastily” declaring on Thursday
that an investigation into Danino had cleared him of any wrongdoing.
Saturday, a source from the Comptroller’s Office said, “The Office of the
Attorney-General moved hastily [in clearing Danino]. The police chief completes
his term in May, so there is time. We are looking at two complaints [into
Danino], and we are working as quickly as possible. We have not completed our
“So far, we have found neither positive nor negative
results pertaining to Danino’s conduct.”
Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu expressed support for Danino’s appointment, saying, “I trust and and
am confident that Danino will lead the police forward and will act to increase
enforcement, fight against violence, and strengthen the security of the
During a press conference held jointly by
Cohen and Danino, Cohen praised the appointment, saying he
would fully cooperate with Danino and make decisions jointly with him until
Danino declined to comment publicly, saying only that he was heading
to his family to tell them the news.