Former prime minister Ehud Olmert with lawyer in court 311.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
As he took the witness stand for the final time in the Jerusalem District Court
Sunday, former prime minister Ehud Olmert was grilled about charges against his
former bureau chief, Shula Zaken.
Zaken has been indicted on a charge
that she secretly eavesdropped on Olmert’s phone conversations with senior
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Zaken admitted that she had eavesdropped on Olmert’s phone
conversations with former prime minister Ariel Sharon and then-Likud leader
Binyamin Netanyahu in court last year, but denied recalling the contents of
Olmert denied lying to police investigators that he
had not known about the eavesdropping, and said that he thought the
investigators were referring to phone calls related to national
After the trial, Olmert’s attorney, Eli Zohar, told reporters
that the former prime minister had “given a worthy explanation of all the
charges he has been accused of”.
Olmert’s spokesperson, Amir Dan, told
The Jerusalem Post that the former prime minister had given “clear answers to
every question he was asked.”
“At the end of his testimony, the only
thing that remains to be said is that the indictments [against Olmert] are quite
simply absurd. A prime minister was forced to step down on the basis of these
absurd charges,” said Dan.
The trial is expected to recommence in the
second week of September, following the courts’ August recess.
stage of the trial will hear witnesses for the defense, including Raanan Dinor,
the former general manager of the prime minister’s office.
It is likely
that Olmert’s son, Shaul Olmert, will also testify.
However, it is not
yet known whether Shula Zaken, Olmert’s former bureau chief, will take the