'A disgrace that Lapid is the main witness'

Politicians from across the political spectrum respond to police recommendations that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu be indicted.

Hezki Baruch and Elad Benari,

Yariv Levin
Yariv Levin
Hillel Maeir/TPS

Politicians from across the political spectrum responded on Tuesday evening to the police recommendations that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu be indicted in both the “Case 1000” and “Case 2000” investigations.

Tourism Minister Yariv Levin (Likud) said, "The despicable move to carry out a coup against the will of the voter was revealed tonight. It is a disgrace that the main witness against Prime Minister Netanyahu is the politician Yair Lapid, who has been trying to replace him for years."

"Lapid, who lost twice in the elections, is trying to conquer the government by means of an untrustworthy testimony. There is no doubt that the truth will come to light and the government will continue to lead Israel in our own way and under the confident leadership of Prime Minister Netanyahu," he added.

Coalition chairman MK David Amsalem (Likud) said, "There is nothing new, the target was already set two years ago. Dozens of arrows were fired at the target in the hopes that one of them would reach the target and after turning every stone, in every corner of the world, the police did everything possible to hit the target."

"According to my understanding, this is an illegitimate process that endangers every democratic state in the world. In a democratic state, a regime is replaced in the ballot box, and not through the army or the police."

MK Amsalem said that "during the deliberations of the Interior Committee on the Recommendations Law, the amazing fact came up that close to 80 percent of the police recommendations are rejected by the State Prosecutor's Office. I hope that they will seriously consider the evidence. To me and to a large number of citizens who do not go to Rothschild [to protest], It is clear what the decision is supposed to be."

"In no democratic country in the world would they dare or ever think of summoning an incumbent prime minister and questioning him on whether he received bottles of wine, chocolates or cigars from his friend. How far will we go?" he concluded.

Communications Minister Ayoob Kara (Likud) tweeted, "I believe in his innocence and strengthen the hands of our prime minister – Binyamin Netanyahu. I am certain that the truth will come to light and that Netanyahu will be able to conclude this term as well as the next one."

"Netanyahu was elected by the people with a huge majority - and he continues and will continue, with the national government he heads, to lead and secure the future of the State of Israel," he added.

MK Eitan Broshi (Zionist Union) said that "a day on which the police recommend the filing of two indictments for bribery against an incumbent prime minister is a sad and embarrassing day for the State of Israel, its citizens and anyone concerned about the image and strength of society and state."

"The prime minister, his government and the entire coalition must do some deep soul-searching and examine how to proceed from here. Israel needs a responsible and honest leadership that truly cares about the state and not about holding on to its seat. We are in a complex time period and there is great importance to stable and balanced leadership. I am certain that the attorney general will do his work faithfully and without bias," added Broshi.

MK Esawi Frej (Meretz) charged, "Bibi is like the Pied Piper of Hamelin. He plays the tune of corruption and incitement and the coalition follows him, charmed by the pleasures of power. Today we once again witness the silence of the sheep by the coalition of clowns."

"A coalition made up of a miserable and hypocritical group that has lost any shreds of integrity it still had and is now interested in only one thing, survival! History will judge this silence. The voters, too," he added.

Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev (Likud) said in response to the police recommendations, "I am not surprised by the police recommendations that were known in advance and which, as we know, have no legal validity."

"The only new information that was discovered tonight is the true face of Yair Lapid being exposed, a failed politician who preferred to join the guillotine protesters at Rothschild and try to bring down Netanyahu and the Likud in undemocratic ways. The publication of his identity as the main witness is the last nail in his political coffin."

MK Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism), chair of the Knesset Finance Committee, said that "the prime minister has a presumption of innocence, and as long as it is not decided otherwise by the competent authorities on the matter, the prime minister is allowed to continue in his position. This is the law, and this is how we relate to the matter, and I hope that he will come out clean and innocent."

Science Minister Ofir Akunis (Likud) commented on his Facebook page and wrote, "Israel is a state of law. In a state of law, a prime minister is not convicted on the basis of police recommendations and not in television studios."

"I believe the prime minister's remarks on the issues to which he responded. I tell you again tonight: The prime minister is elected by Israeli citizens and only in free and democratic elections."

Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud) said that "the prime minister made it clear that there was no flaw in his actions. I have known Binyamin Netanyahu for decades and believe in his integrity and innocence. My tenure as Minister of Justice taught me that the prosecution is acting professionally and practically. It and the attorney general should be allowed to arrive at the findings without improper pressure, demonstrations, guillotines in the town squares and hate signs."

"The Likud will continue to trust the prime minister and help him lead the country," added Hangebi.

The chairman of the Knesset’s Internal Affairs and Environment Committee, MK Yoav Kisch (Likud), said that "the prime minister in his speech tonight tore apart the accusations of 'bribery' against him. The new delusional situation is that ‘the key witness’ against him is Yair Lapid, a current political rival who is trying to replace the prime minister and who served under him as finance minister.”

"Do members of the opposition want to live in a country where the policeman is the investigator, the prosecutor and the judge? I do not. We live in a democratic state. A democratic state in which the police recommendations are a summary of the investigative activities, but in which only the attorney general can make a decision on the issue of filing an indictment."

"This is how it works in a state of law, and if the opposition wants to throw the law into the garbage just because it is politically convenient for it, we will not allow it. It is good that the saga of waiting for the police recommendations that were accompanied by leaks of slander has ended,” added Kisch.


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