A-G Weinstein freezes Barak's Galant affair probe

Prior to first meeting of Brick Committee, attorney general reverses defense minister's decision to launch investigation of top military officers.

Weinstein 311 (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
Weinstein 311
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
The Brick Committee, established by Defense Minister Ehud Barak to conduct an internal investigation regarding the “Galant Document” – now often referred to as the “Harpaz document” for the man who allegedly forged it – will not begin its investigation until further notice, Attorney- General Yehuda Weinstein announced on Monday.
Weinstein made the announcement in a letter written by his senior aide, Raz Nazri, to a correspondent who had called on him to do so.
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“Even before your letter arrived, the attorney-general asked the minister of defense to freeze the work of the committee he had established to investigate various aspects of the ‘Harpaz document,’” wrote Nazri. “The minister of defense agreed to the request.”
Nazri wrote that the reason for his request was that the state prosecution had not yet studied the evidence gathered by the police and that they may yet want to question other individuals whom the Brick Committee might also want to summon.
Barak established the committee because he was not satisfied with the conclusions of the police investigation, which found that Boaz Harpaz had forged the document by himself and had no accomplices. The defense minister also wants to investigate how and why the document was leaked to the media and whether Chief of General Staff Lt.- Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi was involved in the affair.
Weinstein also referred to a directive of the Attorney- General’s Office stating that a criminal investigation receives priority and an internal investigation could interfere with it.
Weinstein said the Brick Committee should not begin its investigation until the state prosecution and the army made their decisions regarding the possible criminal and disciplinary aspects of the affair.
Barak’s office released a statement that the defense minister was in touch with Weinstein and would work out a way for the Brick Committee to begin its work as soon as possible.

Yaakov Katz contributed to this report.