Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon at UNHCR 150.
(photo credit: Courtesy of the Foreign Minister's Office)
Both Channel 2 and Channel 10 confirmed Monday night media reports from previous days that Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon is a main source of new and more serious accusations against Yisrael Beytenu party leader Avigdor Liberman in the indictment against him in the Belarus Ambassador Affair, which could lead to new charges of active fraud.
Ayalon's reported statements would also contradict Liberman's story that he took no active role in the affair, though Ayalon has denied that he was even questioned, and Liberman has maintained his innocence on all charges.
The prosecution and the police both refused to confirm or deny whether Ayalon was recently questioned.
Ayalon has issued a statement Monday evening denying he was ever questioned.
The deputy foreign minister was only questioned recently in the affair which until recently only involved allegations that former ambassador Zeev Ben-Aryeh leaked investigative material to Liberman, after which Liberman withheld Ben-Aryeh's illegal acts from a foreign ministry committee considering giving him a new ambassadorship in Latvia.
The new allegations against Liberman, which started to surface last week, are that Liberman actively interfered in the appointment process on Ben-Aryeh's behalf.
The new allegations, which the reports said stem primarily from Ayalon, who was head of the appointments committee and involved in the proceedings, would move the charges from the realm of passive fraud to active fraud, with potentially more serious applicable punishments and political consequences.
The Channel 10 report added that several other witnesses from the appointments committee confirm and strengthen Ayalon's statements regarding Liberman's alleged conduct.
Channel 2 reported that Liberman will be re-questioned this coming weekend regarding Ayalon's new allegations.
Liberman is expected to try to defend against Ayalon's statements by saying that it is just Ayalon taking revenge against him for recently being left off Yisrael Beytenu's list for the next Knesset, Channel 2 said.
Also, Liberman was expected, according to the Channel 2 report, to note an earlier interview by Ayalon in which he said he did not remember the events surrounding the allegations against Liberman, according to the Channel 2 report.