Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu becomes the first leader of the country to face trial while also serving office. The Prime Minister has just began his new term as a prime minister of the country.
Arriving at the Jerusalem courthouse, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the cases were aimed at “toppling him in any way possible”. He has rejected calls by opponents to step down while he fights the cases.
Currently Mr. Netanyahu is serving in a coalition government that he and political rival, Benny Gantz, agreed to share power following three inconclusive elections in under a year.
Mr. Benjamin is the longest serving political leader in the country as he has been serving since 2009. He has served the nation continuously without being ousted.
What are the Charges on the Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu?
The prime minister has been charged with fraud, breach of trust and accepting bribes in a series of cases. He is accused of accepting expensive gifts, such as cartons of champagne and cigars, from wealthy friends and offering favours to media moguls in exchange for favourable news coverage of him and his family.
In the most serious case, he is accused of promoting legislation that delivered hundreds of millions of dollars of profits to the owner of a major telecom company while wielding behind-the-scenes editorial influence over the firm’s popular news website.
According to Israeli law, a leader charged with a crime is not required to resign. But there is no precedent. The closest that we have seen was when former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, stepped down as party leader when he was under investigation for corruption in 2008 but technically remained prime minister until elections.
Opposition leader Yair Lapid called it “an embarrassment” and “horrible for the spirit of the nation” though it is not expected to affect government policy. Mr Netanyahu is still likely to press ahead with plans to annex Jewish settlements and the Jordan Valley – territory in the occupied West Bank – in the coming months, a move certain to infuriate the Palestinians.
Author: Moses Echodu
Moses is an avid Sports and Tech enthusiast. He loves to keep up to date with all the latest information and research on some of the most compelling stories.