Lieberman on Graft Scandal: Yisrael Beiteinu MKs Are Innocent, Party Is Being Smeared

'When it comes to Yisrael Beiteinu, there are no elections without investigations,' party chairman writes in Facebook post bashing police.

ברק רביד - צרובה
Barak Ravid
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Yisrael Beiteinu MK Faina Kirshenbaum and party chairman Avigdor Lieberman.
Yisrael Beiteinu MK Faina Kirshenbaum and party chairman Avigdor Lieberman.Credit: Emil Salman
ברק רביד - צרובה
Barak Ravid

Yisrael Beiteinu chairman Avigdor Lieberman on Friday lashed out at police in a post on his Facebook page that addressed the corruption scandal embroiling senior members of his party.

"Time after time, without exception, in each election cycle, 'anonymous forces' intervene and undermine Yisrael Beiteinu's right to a fair competition," Lieberman wrote. "When it comes to Yisrael Beiteinu, there are no elections without investigations."

Lieberman also wrote that he believes in his fellow lawmakers' innocence, saying there shouldn't be a rush to judgment in their case.

"In a democratic society, a person is innocent until proven otherwise," he wrote. "I also strongly reject the attempts to smear all of Yisrael Beiteinu. We have always known how to deal with this and emerged stronger. This time we will also grow stronger."

More than two dozen senior figures in the Israeli public sector were detained for questioning this week over suspicion they illegally allocated funds to non-sanctioned organizations and laundered money through a straw company.

The approximately 30 suspects also allegedly granted personal favors, engaged in bribery, and pushed for their associates' promotions.

The investigation, which has been ongoing for about a year, involved searches of homes and offices of the suspects, and computers and documents were confiscated.

The suspects include Yisrael Beiteinu MK and Deputy Interior Minister Faina Kirshenbaum and fellow party member and former Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov.

The other suspects include members of Knesset, heads of regional authorities, the deputy general of a government office, the directors general and heads of non-governmental organizations, senior public union members, senior sports officials and political activists.

A gag order had been imposed on the case until the end of the year-long covert investigation, which was coordinated with the attorney general and police commissioner.



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