'The Opposition refuses to accept the will of the People'

Deputy Foreign Minister responds to police recommendation that PM be indicted. 'Attorney General is being pressured to indict at all costs.'

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Tzipi Hotovely
Tzipi Hotovely
Kobi Richter/ TPS

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) on Wednesday responded to Israel Police's decision to recommend Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu be indicted.

Israel Police on Tuesday evening recommended Netanyahu be indicted for Case 1000 and Case 2000.

Case 1000 involves gifts Netanyahu reported received from wealthy businessmen, including billionaire filmmaker Arnon Milchan. These gifts included boxes of cigars, bottles champagne, and jewelry, which were allegedly requested by the Netanyahus.

Case 2000 alleges that Netanyahu conspired with the publisher of the Yediot Aharonot newspaper against Israel Hayom, a competing and popular pro-Netanyahu Hebrew daily distributed for free in Israel.

The case alleges that Netanyahu agreed to pass a law banning the free distribution of newspapers, in exchange for promises from Yediot publisher Arnon Mozes that his paper would tone down its criticism of the premier.

Standing in front of the Knesset, Hotovely said, "A huge storm is passing over the Israel's lawmaking body in the wake of the police recommendations. I am here to remind us all of the basic rules of democracy."

"Everyone talks about morals and values, and the value of the rule of law, but the rule of law in Israel is first of all to honor the nation's choice.

"You, the Israeli voters, chose Netanyahu and the Likud party to lead the State of Israel in democratic elections. That was the will of the majority of Israelis.

"This house is divided into a coalition and opposition, a government and a minority who want to replace the government. Unfortunately, it seems that this minority never accepted the voters' will. Again and again we see wrangling, which is legitimate when you're discussing opinions or alternative ideas, but which is not legitimate when you systematically pressure the government's Attorney General to indict someone no matter what the cost."

Hotovely also noted that "this isn't about a desire to expose the truth, and there's no real desire here to obey the rules of Israeli democracy. There's a desire to replace the government in a way other than the one laid out by Israeli law."

"We all want to know the truth, but you need to remember: There is a huge difference between police recommendations, which are not obligatory, and the Attorney General, who is the only one who is responsible for trying publicly elected figures.

"Yes, we all want Israel's public figures to have clean hands, and we all want clean elections, but we need to remember: When we're discussing serious accusations, such as bribery, there needs to be actual proof in order to try someone. If you're talking about accepting gifts from friends, there's a huge question of whether the police actually have proof that it is bribery, in the classic sense of receiving something in return. I think it's clear to all of us that the truth is neither exposed nor revealed.

"The most absurd part is that the police's main witness is the very person who sees himself as replacing Netanyahu.

"If Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid) wants to replace Netanyahu, let him win the nation's trust, not try to accomplish it via the police. We are here to protect Israeli democracy, and to ensure that we all know the legal truth, not just the media events which, at the end of the day, all have the same purpose: To replace the will of the voter."

Watch the Hebrew video here: