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Israel’s attorney general calls on Netanyahu to fire Deri

Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara informed the prime minister that he must abide by Wednesday's Supreme Court decision.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks with Shas chairman Aryeh Deri in the Knesset. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks with Shas chairman Aryeh Deri in the Knesset. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.

Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara demanded on Thursday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fire coalition partner Aryeh Deri of the Shas Party from his government, in keeping with Wednesday’s Supreme Court ruling.

Baharav-Miara informed the prime minister that Deri must be removed as minister of interior and health and from his position as vice prime minister. The roles should be filled with replacements, she said.

The Supreme Court ruled by 10 to 1 that Deri’s appointments were unreasonable “in the extreme,” given his conviction on tax fraud in February 2022.

As a key figure in the coalition who stands at the head of a party with 11 Knesset seats, Deri is still expected to play a significant role in the government.

His best option may be an appointment as alternate prime minister. Based on previous court rulings, such a position wouldn’t be barred to Deri because of his criminal conviction, unlike other cabinet positions.

The Knesset’s legal adviser said the only way to appoint Deri as alternate prime minister would be for the government to dissolve itself and form a new one.

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