PM, ministers’ responses to ‘Bibi-Tours’ draft report due

February 1, 2013 01:59

Draft reportedly reviews allegations of improper funding and double billing for international trips Netanyahu and other top officials took.

1 minute read.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at the weekly cabinet meeting, January 27, 2013.

Netanyahu at cabinet meeting 370. (photo credit: Emil Salman/Haaretz, poo)

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and 30 other ministers and deputy ministers were due to submit their responses on Thursday to a draft State Comptroller’s Report on the “Bibi-Tours” affair.

The draft reportedly reviewed allegations of improper funding and double billing for international trips Netanyahu and other top officials took.

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It is widely believed that the prime minister and other officials did send responses to the state comptroller, but by press time there was no confirmation of the content of the responses or when they were filed. However, the responses would have been kept confidential in any case.

State Comptroller Joseph Shapira sent Netanyahu the draft of the report at the end of December, Channel 2 reported at the time.

In March 2011, Channel 10 investigative reporter Raviv Drucker reported on his show, Hamakor, on a series of flights that Netanyahu took with his wife, Sara, in the late 1990s and early 2000s – flights allegedly funded by wealthy associates.

According to Drucker’s report, Netanyahu allegedly used a carefully crafted network of such associates to finance private flights, luxury hotel suites, first-class restaurants, and trips abroad for him and his family – benefits that the show characterized as ethical infractions.

In April 2011, Drucker made additional allegations on his show, alleging that on two occasions before he became prime minister, Netanyahu billed different organizations for the same flight.

According to the reporter, in one case, Netanyahu attended a 2006 fundraising event in the US for the Ashdod Medical Center, billing it $8,237 for the flights. He allegedly billed the Jewish Heritage Foundation the same amount for flights he took on the same dates.

The final report is expected to come out in a few months.

Jerusalem Post Staff contributed to this report.

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