Report: Senior Official in Netanyahu’s Office Harassed Employee

Female worker claims PM's bureau chief Natan Eshel allegedly harassed and followed her outside the workplace; PMO says no complaint was filed and matter was only ‘gossip.’

The Civil Service Commission recently investigated a complaint that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's bureau chief Natan Eshel allegedly harassed one of the female employee working in the office, Army Radio reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, the employee told her friends that the Eshel had allegedly invaded her privacy and followed her outside the workplace. She also complained that he went through the text messages on her cellular phone and went through her private email account.

Netanyahu Jan. 22, 2012 (Moshe Milner / GPO)
Moshe Milner / GPO

Haaretz has learned that the employee did not want to complain to the police or to the Civil Service Commission, but several days later an anonymous complaint was filed to Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein on the matter.

Weinstein, inexplicably, did not call for a police investigation but rather transferred the matter for further examination to the Civil Service Commission's disciplinary division.

The Justice Ministry said in response Tuesday that after the information was brought to the attention of the Attorney General, Weinstein instructed the Civil Service Commission to investigate the information in order to verify its validity.

“At this time, we have not found a substantial basis to the information
and an investigation has not been opened,” the Justice Ministry said. The Civil Service Commission referred to the Justice Ministry’s comment and refused to divulge additional details.

The Prime Minister’s Office said in response that no complaint was filed against a senior official in the office, saying the matter is simply “gossip.”