Avichai Mandelblit and Shai Nitzan
Avichai Mandelblit and Shai NitzanOlivier Fitoussi/Flash 90

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit spoke on Thursday with former State Attorney Shai Nitzan after recordings of him sharply criticizing Nitzan were published by Channel 12 News earlier this week.

Mandelblit was taped in several conversations with his close friend Effi Naveh, the former head of the Bar Association, and can be heard telling him that Nitzan “is working against me in an unacceptable manner, out of ulterior motives,” and that “this maniac won’t be the one to make the decisions.”

Mandelblit was referring to a case that had been opened against him, expressing the hope that it would not impact on his appointment as Attorney General. He accused both Shai Nitzan and Dina Zilber, now his deputy, of “stitching up a case” against him.

While Mandelblit was ultimately appointed as Attorney General, he remained concerned about the still-open case, telling Naveh that Nitzan “has me by the throat … in the end, I’m going to explode.”

Mandelblit told senior officials in the State Attorney's Office on Thursday, "I apologized to Shai Nitzan after the recordings were published, we straightened things out."

"I used harsh expressions that reflected anger," the Attorney General said, claiming that the person who released the recordings "made a foolish attempt to light the conspiracy fire."

"My work with Shai Nitzan was conducted in a professional manner. After the publication, I spoke with him and the issues were resolved. The claim that his treatment of my personal issue was used to influence professional decisions is unfounded," Mandelblit added.

The Attorney General further claimed that the timing of the publication was not accidental. "The trial of Prime Minister Netanyahu will begin soon. We still have challenging days ahead, we will not shy away," he said.