Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s corruption trial to determine whether Netanyahu received a bribe as prime minister, could become a closed-door mediation proceeding, according to a lawyer involved in the premier’s case.
The complex Netanyahu trial began in April 2021, after Israel’s longest-serving prime minister was indicted under allegations of bribery, fraud and breach of trust two years prior in 2019.
Ilana Dayan, a prominent Israeli television host who heads a popular weekly investigative show on Israel’s Channel 12 news, said Netanyahu’s legal council reportedly did not automatically reject the mediation proposal.
Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara will reportedly need to decide whether the Netanyahu trial should be transferred out of the Jerusalem District Court, which is currently handling it. It is unclear what the attorney general will decide, given her strained personal relationship with the prime minister.
In late March, Baharav-Miara accused Netanyahu of acting illegally when he announced he would step in personally to direct the judicial overhaul process which has faced opposition in recent months. The attorney general argued that Netanyahu’s involvement violated a conflict-of-interest agreement which stated he was not to get personally involved in Israel’s judicial system due to his ongoing corruption trial.
“In doing so, you violated the ruling of the Supreme Court, according to which, as a prime minister accused of crimes, you must refrain from taking actions that give rise to a reasonable fear of the existence of a conflict of interest between your personal interests relating to the criminal proceedings and your role as prime minister,” Baharav-Miara said.
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.