Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits the site of the shooting on Dizengoff, January 2. 2016..
(photo credit: HAIM ZACH/GPO)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu charged Saturday night that police leaks on the investigations being conducted against him continue and have “become a tsunami” despite a decision by Police Commissioner Insp.-Gen. Roni Alsheich to work to stop them.
“When Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich took office, he made two important decisions – there would be no more leaks from the investigations and no more police recommendations,” the Prime Minister’s Office said after Channel 2 reported that the Israel Police planned to renew its investigation into Netanyahu.
“Since political adviser Lior Horev was appointed as an external adviser to the police at a cost of millions to the taxpayer and without a tender, the illegal leaks have become a tsunami, and the decision to avoid recommendations disappeared as if it never was,” the PMO said.
“The public has long understood that there is a clear media campaign against Prime Minister Netanyahu. This time, just as it has always happened in the past, all the allegations against the prime minister will be proven false,” it added.
The police fired back at Netanyahu's accusations, saying that they "will not be dragged down by baseless attacks designed to disrupt the work of the police and undermine the legitimacy of the rule of law."
Opposition leader Isaac Herzog stated, "What started with attacks on artists, journalists and judges have now come to police. Inciting and dividing for his own personal interest at the expense of the unity of the nation and harming the symbol of law and government."
Former prime minister Ehud Barak wrote on Twitter, "Netanyahu is panicking and attacking his investigators who are probing him with courage and integrity." He called upon attorney general Avichai Mandelblit to defend police from the attack.
Former police officer Yesh Atid MK Mickey Levy called Netanyahu's attack on the police a "cynical move taken in order to instill fear and deter law enforcement." He also added that "it is an embarrassment that the prime minister of Israel has reached such a point of recklessness and humiliating attacks on law-abiding people who are merely performing their duties."
Coalition chairman David Bitan defended Netanyahu, "He has every right to defend himself from the police. The leaks have become a serious problem."
According to media reports, the police are expected to question Netanyahu on the “Gifts Affair” and the “Israel Hayom
In the former, known as Case 1000
, Netanyahu is alleged to have illegally received expensive gifts from a number of businessmen. In the latter, known as Case 2000
, Netanyahu allegedly tried to sway the Hebrew daily Yediot Aharonot
to give him favorable coverage in exchange for his support for a bill that would weaken a rival paper, Israel Hayom
Netanyahu has rejected all allegations against him.
Meanwhile, some 300 people again protested near Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit’s home on Saturday evening calling for Netanyahu to be indicted in the various corruption investigations.