'Uzi Arad's leaked info was a civil, not security, issue'

Official says classified info dealt with energy, according to Israel Radio; report comes after Justice Ministry confirms Arad was PMO leak.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
May 18, 2011 09:20
1 minute read.
Uzi Arad

Arad 311. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski/The Jerusalem Post))

A senior official on Wednesday said that former national security advisor Uzi Arad's leaking of classified information was not a security issues, rather a civil one, Israel Radio reported.

The official said that the leak involved a discussion between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Arad over energy and electricity, and that the conversation was leaked inadvertently in briefing with a journalist.

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Arad was forced to resign because he leaked the classified information, the Justice Ministry confirmed on Tuesday.

Netanyahu, furious at the leak last July, directed the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) to investigate and find the source. Some six months ago the Attorney General's Office pointed to Arad as the official responsible. According to the Channel 10 report, the leak was unintentional and came as a side comment during a background briefing with a journalist.

Arad announced his retirement in March, saying he wanted to return to academia. Netanyahu tried to appoint him ambassador to London, but that was blocked by Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman.

Arad travelled to Washington in recent days with his successor, Yaakov Amidror, to complete a hand-over of responsibilities.

The PMO issued a statement saying it did not address internal investigations, even when what was being reported was incorrect and full of inaccuracies. The statement said that Arad asked to leave his post after serving in it for two years, and that Netanyahu accepted his resignation and appreciated Arad's  contribution to the country's security.


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