Netanyahu Calls for Live Broadcast of His Pre-indictment Hearing

The only way for justice and truth to prevail is to open next week's hearing to the public, premier tells attorney general

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a statement in Jerusalem on September 25, 2019.
Sebastian Scheiner,AP

>> Update: Israel's attorney general rejects Netanyahu's request to broadcast pre-indictment hearing

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked attorney general Avichai Mendelblit on Thursday to broadcast live his pre-indictment hearing, scheduled for next week.

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"After a torrent of slanted, partial leaks, it's time for the public to hear everything," Netanyahu said in a video he circulated. "Not only do I have nothing to hide," the prime minister continued, "I want everything to be heard. That is my request – a live broadcast of the hearing. This way, we will guarantee truth and justice."

Addressing the current charges Netanyahu may face, Benny Gantz spoke to the media on Thursday and said that his party “will not be able to sit under a prime minister who has active indictments against him.”

The Kahol Lavan leader called on Netanyahu and his Likud party to hold negotiations "without preconditions, without [media] spin and without hurdles." 

Netanyahu cases

Gantz clarified that although receiving ministerial portfolios allows for achievements, it's not an end unto itself. "These positions are secondary, and that authority is not my goal," he noted. "I am not looking to be prime minister in the name of respect. I requested the faith of the public out of a sense of mission, not authority, and I will continue to request this until a government is established in Israel." He called on Netanyahu and Likud "to discuss content and essence" rather than "sewing suits and building political blocs."    

Earlier this week, rather than sending the attorney general a document outlining the basis of his claim that he is not guilty, Netanyahu sent one page void of explanations to back his statement that he is innocent.

Mendelblit announced in February that he decided to indict the prime minister, pending a hearing, for fraud, bribery and breach of trust in the three criminal cases.

In Case 1000, the premier is suspected of taking gifts from Hollywood mogul Arnon Milchan in return for political favors; in Case 2000, he is suspected of striking a deal with Yedioth Ahronoth publisher Arnon Mozes for favorable coverage in return for legislation to curb a rival newspaper; and in Case 4000, he is suspected of awarding privileges to telecommunications tycoon Shaul Elovitch in exchange for positive coverage on his Walla news site.