(September 1, 2019 / JNS) During a Facebook live video on Saturday night, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused Israeli television’s Channel 12 owners and executives of carrying out a “terror attack against democracy” for broadcasting extensive leaks and coverage from the criminal cases against him.
According to Netanyahu, Channel 12 crime reporter Guy Peleg has intentionally misquoted transcripts to harm him, calling the outlet a “propaganda channel” with a “blood libel” based on false testimony.
Netanyahu claimed that executives Avi Nir, CEO of Keshet, the operator of Channel 12; Avi Weiss, CEO of Keshet’s news company; and major Keshet shareholders Yitzhak Tshuva and Drorit Wertheim were crusading against him for “trying to break up their monopoly.”
“They put me on trial nightly, and they are doing their best to blacken my name as they blacken the name of Israel,” he said.
A day prior to posting the Facebook video, Netanyahu called for a boycott of Channel 12 and Keshet for its role in producing the controversial HBO series “Our Boys,” which tells the story of the kidnapping and murder of Arab teen Mohammed Abu Khdeir by Jewish extremists in 2014. Lacking context of the kidnapping and murder of the three Jewish teens by Hamas terrorists weeks before, the series was labeled anti-Semitic and “fake news” for its attempt to “tarnish us in the world with lies against the State of Israel,” according to the prime minister.
Also on Friday, following a judge’s temporary denial of his party’s request to prevent anyone from discussing transcripts from the investigation of his corruption probes, Netanyahu warned that anyone who leaks information about the investigations will be subject to three years in prison.
Netanyahu denies wrongdoing in the criminal cases against him as he fights for re-election. The prime minister is scheduled for a pre-indictment hearing on Oct. 2-3 in multiple breach of trust corruption probes.
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