update deskIsrael News

Israeli A-G opposes petition to disqualify Netanyahu

The petitioner's claims are "not well-founded," Gali Baharav-Miara writes.

Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara at a ceremony held for outgoing Supreme Court Justice George Karra,  May 29, 2022. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.
Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara at a ceremony held for outgoing Supreme Court Justice George Karra, May 29, 2022. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.

Israel’s attorney general on Sunday shot down a petition to remove Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from office due to an alleged conflict of interest.

Gali Baharav-Miara submitted her position in a letter to the Supreme Court, sitting as the High Court of Justice, in response to a court hearing on a petition by the Fort Democracy protest group.

She called for the justices to reject outright the petition alleging that Netanyahu violated a conflict of interest agreement reached with the previous attorney general, Avichai Mandelblit, when the premier said in a March 23 television address that he would no longer stand on the sidelines of the judicial reform debate.

Justice Ruth Ronnen last week ordered the court to hold a hearing on the petition.

“Under the existing circumstances and in this state of affairs, there is no reason to demand that the honorable court intervene and grant the far-reaching remedies requested in this petition, including the termination of the prime minister’s term, nor is there any reason in the letters of the legal adviser to the government [the attorney general’s position in Hebrew] to establish a reason like that,” Baharav-Miara wrote.

The petitioner’s claims “do not lay before the honorable court a factual foundation, certainly not solid and well-founded. What emerges from this is that the petition in its current form remains general, and therefore should be dismissed,” she continued.

Meanwhile, mass demonstrations continued into their 28th straight week on Saturday night with tens of thousands of protesters packing the streets of Tel Aviv and thousands more gathering across the country against the coalition’s judicial reform initiative.

Organizers said that they were planning “days of disruption” in the coming week as the head of the Histadrut labor federation, Arnon Bar-David, threatened another general strike similar to the one on March 27 that shut down large parts of Israel’s economy.

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