Netanyahu Formally Resigns From Ministerial Posts Over Criminal Charges

Indictment in corruption cases means PM can't keep the multiple portfolios he has been holding, but he has yet to appoint replacement

Noa Landau
Noa Landau
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Benjamin Netanyahu leaves after delivering a statement regarding his intention to file a request to the Knesset for immunity from prosecution, in Jerusalem on January 1, 2020.
Benjamin Netanyahu leaves after delivering a statement regarding his intention to file a request to the Knesset for immunity from prosecution, in Jerusalem on January 1, 2020. Credit: GIL COHEN-MAGEN / AFP
Noa Landau
Noa Landau

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has resigned from his ministerial posts as required by the indictment against him, he announced Wednesday.

Netanyahu has held the health, welfare, agriculture, and diaspora affairs portfolios, but someone who has been indicted for a crime cannot serve as a minister. There is no such rule regarding the position of prime minister. 

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The prime minister said he would appoint replacement in the coming days.

Also Wednesday, Netanyahu, facing criminal charges in three corruption cases, said that he had decided to officially request immunity from prosecution.

Court proceedings in Netanyahu's cases will only begin after the Knesset completes its handling of the immunity request – and the expected appeals to the High Court on the matter. 

According to Israeli law, the Knesset House Committee is to discuss his request and should it be approved, the request will need to pass a vote by the Knesset plenum.

However, since a House Committee has not been appointed since the April general election, and is not expected to be assembled before the upcoming March election, the discussion will only take place in several months. Until the committee makes a decision, an indictment against Netanyahu can't be handed officially to the court.

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