Netanyahu: My Rivals Should Apologize for Submarine Affair Accusations

Day after giving testimony to police in 'Case 3000,' PM says 'the air has been let out of this balloon'

File photo: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu climbs out after a visit inside the Rahav submarine, after it arrived in Haifa port, January 12, 2016.
Baz Ratner/Reuters

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday called on rival politicians and the media to apologize for accusing him of misconduct in the so-called submarine affair.

Netanyahu's remarks came a day after he gave testimony to police for the first time about the controversial submarine deal, which is also known as "Case 3000."

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"Yesterday it became absolutely clear that that my considerations on the matter of the submarines and the naval vessels were totally businesslike and, as always, were in support of Israel's security," Netanyahu said.

"Now I would expect to hear from the media and from politicians like [Yesh Atid leader Yair] Lapid and [former Israeli army Chief of Staff Moshe] Ya'alon that they were apologizing. They haven't done so up to now, but what do they say?," he added.

"The air has been let out of this balloon and [will] ultimately be let out of all of the other balloons," Netanyahu added in a reference to a number of other cases in which he has been implicated. "Will they apologize then? It's doubtful, but one can hope," he concluded.

The submarine affair revolves around alleged corruption surrounding a $2 billion deal to purchase submarines and other naval vessels from German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp. A number of close associates of Netanyahu have been implicated.

"The prime minister gave testimony in Case 3000, the submarines case, for the first time. He is not a suspect," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said after Netanyahu gave testimony Tuesday.