'If Netanyahu Had a Way to Get Me Hurt, Killed, He Would,' Gantz Says in Leaked Recording

In the recording, broadcast on Israeli television news, Gantz said Netanyahu may have coordinated with the Russians to hack his phone

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Benny Gantz responding to the Netanyahu indictment, February 28, 2019.
Benny Gantz responding to the Netanyahu indictment, February 28, 2019.Credit: Tomer Appelbaum

“If [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu had a way for me to get hurt, for me to get killed, he would do it,” said Benny Gantz, the head of the Kahol Lavan party and Netanyahu’s main rival in the coming election, in a recording broadcast by Channel 13 News on Sunday evening.

In closed meetings held after the reports that his cellphone had been hacked, Gantz said: “Would the old Netanyahu, the one I know, want me to get hurt? The answer is no. Would the Benjamin Netanyahu of the eve of the election want me to get hurt? Regretfully, I would say so.” 

>> Read more: Former Mossad chief: Leaking hack of Gantz's phone 'an attack on democracy'Gantz phone-hacking affair: 9 questions that must be answered | Analysis

Gantz also said it is possible that Iran is behind the hacking of his phone, but does not rule out cooperation between Netanyahu and Russia in the hack.

“Okay, if it’s not the enemies – then who did it? It’s the rivals. If it’s not the rivals, then how did they do it? By one of two possibilities. One possibility is they take private individuals who do some cyber activities or another. The second possibility that suits Bibi [Netanyahu], even though I don’t give it a high chance, is that he mobilized the Russians to intervene in the election,” said Gantz on the recording.

As for Netanyahu’s fate after the election, Gantz said Netanyahu “knows he is going to prison. He knows he is in prison in every way. If he finishes his job as prime minister, he is going to prison. If he doesn’t go on trial, he isn’t going to prison and he is with Sara – he remains in prison. The only place where he is a free man is in the office.”