Meretz Chair Calls for Probe Into Deputy PM Silvan Shalom's Alleged Sexual Harassment

Attorney General will meet with police, Justice Ministry officials at start of the week to decide whether to open investigation into Silvan Shalom.

Eyal Toueg

Meretz Chairwoman and Knesset member Zehava Galon on Saturday called on the attorney general to bring about the suspension of Interior Minister Silvan Shalom and order inquiries into both Shalom and his wife Judy Shalom Nir-Mozes.

Shalom was accused of sexual harassment in statements made to the media by six women over the past week.

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein will meet with senior police officers and Justice Ministry officials at the start of the week to decide whether an investigation into Shalom should be opened.

In May 2014, Weinstein declined to press charges against Shalom following a similar accusation of sexual harassment against the minister. In that instance, the statute of limitations had already expired.

Statements made by the minister's wife could prejudice any future investigation and "intimidate women who have testified against Shalom, Galon said during a cultural event in Be'er Sheva on Saturday.

In a Twitter post on Thursday, Mozes warned that she would act to stigmatize women who make complaints against her husband. "Eventually, I will speak," Mozes said in one of her tweets, which was subsequently deleted. "Everyone has a past and present. I get all the facts."

On Saturday morning, Mozes tweeted: "I don't know why, but last night I dreamt about the wedding of Efi Bracha's son. Creepy." (Bracha was a senior police officer who committed suicide in July after being implicated in a corruption case.) The tweet was quickly deleted.

"The attorney general ought to instruct the prime minister to suspend minister Shalom and order an investigation into the minister and his wife," Galon said. "As far as I know, new statements against him were still being made as late as last night."

She added that at least some of the testimonies referred to incidents that occurred in the last four to six years and therefore would not be affected by the statute of limitations.

Also calling on Shalom to resign was Knesset Member Shelly Yacimovich (Zionist Union). "At the very least, Shalom should suspend himself until the issue is cleared up, she wrote on Facebook.

The current wave of reports was started by the report that appeared in Haaretz Wednesday on a series of alleged incidents that went on for more than a year. These reports joined those of the first woman who complained of alleged acts by Shalom – the woman said that more than a decade ago, Shalom asked her to perform oral sex, abusing his authority over her. However, that case cannot be prosecuted because of the statute of limitations.