Civil rights groups to PMO: Suspend chief of staff

Eshel was accused of harassing a young female staffer and is being investigated by Civil Service Commission.

By JERUSALEM POST STAFF
January 25, 2012 15:25
1 minute read.
Nathan Eshel

Nathan Eshel 311. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

Civil rights group Ometz appealed to the director-general of the Prime Minister's Office on Wednesday, asking him to suspend Chief of Staff Nathan Eshel until the completion of an inquiry into harassment allegations. A young female staffer complained the Chief of Staff harassed her and intruded on her privacy, Army Radio reported on Wednesday.

In a letter sent to PMO director-general attorney Harel Locker, Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein and Civil Service Commissioner attorney Moshe Dayan, Ometz's director Arieh Avneri said the PMO's "rush to declare the affair to be 'gossip' is premature in the light of the fact that the female staffer, whom Eshel is suspected of harassing, has not yet been investigated and has not given her version."

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Avneri told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday that he also requested Locker ensure that during the Civil Service Commission's examination of the allegations there is no conflict of interest, since Eshel was directly involved in Dayan's appointment.

Also on Wednesday, the Civil Service Commission confirmed that the attorney-general had ordered it to conduct a preliminary investigation into the reliability of the information received by the Justice Ministry about the harassment allegations.

The Justice Ministry said on Tuesday that it is looking into the allegations of harassment, made "A". A Justice Ministry spokesman said Tuesday the ministry “confirmed that following the receipt of information by our office, the attorney- general has instructed the Civil Service Commission’s disciplinary division to hold a preliminary inquiry regarding the reliability of the information.”

The Justice Ministry spokesman added that at this stage, “there is no concrete basis to the information, and an investigation has not been opened.”


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