Mandelblit and Netanyahu
Mandelblit and NetanyahuAmos Ben Gershom/GPO

In recent weeks, contacts have been held between opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu and Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit over a possible plea deal in the trial against the former prime minister.

The contacts lasted a long time and took place under complete secrecy, with few knowing of their existence. Netanyahu is the one who initiated the negotiations.

Channel 13 News reported that as part of the negotiations, Netanyahu agreed to retire from political life for a few years, that is, to retire before he is convicted in court and thus avoid the issue of moral turpitude. Netanyahu also agreed to plead guilty to breach of trust. Mandelblit insists on a minimum sentence of community service and an admission of moral turpitude, which could end Netanyahu's political career and has been the main sticking point in the negotiations.

Although there have been no final agreements, the negotiations have not been cut off and both parties remain open to a deal.

The State Attorney's Office responded: "We do not respond as a policy to questions about conversations with defense attorneys, whether they happened or not. This does not confirm or deny anything of what has been alleged."

Netanyahu's office has not responded to the reports so far.