News World Israeli PM Netanyahu goes on trial for corruption

Israeli PM Netanyahu goes on trial for corruption

 

The corruption trial of Benjamin Netanyahu opens on Sunday in a Jerusalem court, where he will become the first serving Israeli prime minister to face criminal prosecution, in a case he calls a political witch-hunt.

Netanyahu is required to appear for the session in Jerusalem District Court, a week after he was sworn in to a record fifth term as head of a unity government, ending more than a year of political deadlock in the wake of three inconclusive elections.

He was indicted in November on bribery, fraud and breach of trust charges in three cases involving gifts from millionaire friends and for allegedly seeking regulatory favours for media tycoons in return for favourable coverage.

Netanyahu, who heads the right-wing Likud party, has cast his prosecution as a leftist witch-hunt meant to oust a popular right-wing leader.

As prime minister, Netanyahu is under no legal obligation to resign and he has said his court battle will not affect his ability to do his job.

A three-judge panel will hear his case. On Wednesday, it turned down his request to stay away from the opening session.

In asking to be excused, Netanyahu called the event a formality and argued that bringing his contingent of bodyguards would waste public funds and make it hard to comply with social distancing rules.

Some critics said Netanyahu was trying to avoid the optics of a prime minister sitting in the defendant’s dock.

Turning down his request, the court said it was important for justice to be seen to be done.

Six years ago, former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was found guilty of bribe-taking and served 16 months in jail. His trial took place after his 2006-2009 term in office.

Top Stories

Britain says: Russia trying to hack and steal Covid-19 vaccine data

Britain's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has reported that hackers backed by the Russian state are trying to steal treatment research pertaining to Covid-19...

Wanted for breaking and entering and theft (see images)

Police are looking for the person depicted in the photos, in the context of the investigation of a case of burglary and theft, an...

A controlled return to sports post-quarantine for fans…

A lengthy announcement has been issued by the Ministry of Health, which includes all the instructions in view of the new season in sports....

Clarifications over pandemic’s state of play in breakaway North Cyprus

The Greek-Cypriot side will ask for clarifications and information on four issues during the upcoming meeting of the bi-communal Technical Committee for Health which...

Weddings on hold, professional event planners in despair

The Pancyprian Association of Professional Events (PASYEPEK) demands that the holding of open weddings, baptisms and other events without restrictions be re-instated again starting...

Taste

Halloumi cheese fingers

Ingredients Serves: 2 1/2 tablespoon olive oil 175g (6 oz) halloumi cheese, cut into sticks 1 dessertspoon lemon juice 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano freshly ground black pepper to taste Method Prep:5min ›...

Koupes (cracked wheat pies) with mushrooms

Ingredients: For the dough: 1½ cup bulgur wheat 2 cups water 1 tsp. salt For the filling: 250gr. mushrooms, finely chopped ½ cup of olive oil 2 big onions, coarsely chopped 1...

Fried zucchini balls with halloumi

Ingredients: 6 medium zucchinis (approximately 1kg) 1 small onion, grated 1 large halloumi (about 250gr.), grated ½ cup simple flour 2 tsps. fine lemon zest 2 big eggs 1 tbsp. fresh...

Rocket salad

Ingredients: 4 cups rocket leaves, rinsed and dried 1 cup cherry tomatoes 1 cup pomegranate seeds 1 red bell pepper ½ cup croutons 2-3 light cheese slices (grated) salt ½ of a...