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Israel: Officials in probe into Netanyahu's corruption case resign

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks next to US Secretary of State during a joint statement after meeting in Jerusalem on November 19, 2020 [MAYA ALLERUZZO/POOL/AFP via Getty Images]
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks next to US Secretary of State during a joint statement after meeting in Jerusalem on November 19, 2020 [MAYA ALLERUZZO/POOL/AFP via Getty Images]

Members of the inquiry into Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's corruption case related to submarines and warships resigned yesterday over a jurisdiction dispute, local media reported.

The mission, which was tasked last month by Alternate Prime Minister and Defence Minister Benny Gantz to complete the mission, resigned, according to Haaretz, due to a dispute with Israel's Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit over the panel's jurisdiction.

Head of the mission, retired judge Amnon Straschnov, wrote to Gantz: "From the ongoing discussions on the committee's powers between the Attorney General and defense officials and the representatives of the attorney general, I have learned that… real restrictions should be imposed on the work of the committee… In this state of affairs, I am afraid that the committee is left with very limited powers."

Netanyahu's corruption scandal - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Netanyahu's corruption scandal – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Members of the mission told Gantz that they had resigned, and Haaretz said that Gantz is planning to meet with Mendelblit soon in order to appoint new members.

"In light of the great importance of the issue," Gantz wrote to Mendelblit according to the Times of Israel, urging him to urgently complete his investigation into the issue "and allow the committee to begin work because it is an issue of paramount importance for security, the economy, and the public."

The issue of the submarines, Case 3000, is related to charges of bribery brought against Netanyahu in the multi-billion-shekel state purchase of naval vessels from German shipbuilder Thyssenkrupp.

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