Final hurdle preventing Netanyahu immunity removal likely next week

Netanyahu announced on Thursday that he was formally joining the Likud's petition to the High Court against Knesset legal adviser Eyal Yinon's ruling allowing the House Committee to be formed.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting, January 2020. (photo credit: ALEX KOLOMOISKY / POOL)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting, January 2020.
(photo credit: ALEX KOLOMOISKY / POOL)
Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein is expected at the beginning of next week to announce a date for the Knesset plenum to convene to pass the final proposal necessary to ensure that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's immunity will be removed.
There is a majority for removing Netanyahu's immunity in the Knesset plenum and there will also be in the House Committee that will legislate the rejection of his request for immunity from prosecution in his criminal cases. The Knesset Arrangements Committee passed a proposal on Monday to create a House Committee, even though it is normally only established after a government is formed.
But the committee's decision is pending approval by the Knesset plenum. Blue and White pressure Edelstein unsuccessfully for the plenum to be convened this week, while Netanyahu’s associates applied opposite pressure on Edelstein to try to prevent, or at least delay, the convening of the plenum.
Edelstein's associates said he was not taking either threat too seriously. Blue and White said it would start a process of toppling Edelstein if he did not convene the plenum by Monday, but sources close to Edelstein noted that overthrowing him also depended on him convening the Knesset, so it did not matter. The sources said the Likud's pressure was also irrelevant, because he is required to convene the plenum within a reasonable time after he receives a formal request from 25 MKs.
The House Committee will vote to reject Netanyahu's immunity after some three weeks of deliberations. After the vote to reject immunity, Netanyahu’s indictment will be filed to Jerusalem District Court but will not begin for several months. Once the indictment is filed, Netanyahu will not be able to request immunity from the next Knesset.
Netanyahu announced on Thursday that he was formally joining the Likud's petition to the High Court against Knesset legal adviser Eyal Yinon's ruling allowing the House Committee to be formed.
When the plenum next convenes, former Blue and White MK Yorai Lahav Hertzanu will be sworn in, replacing MK Gadi Yevarkan, who resigned on Wednesday in order to run with the Likud in the March election.