Benyamin Netanyahu denounces "coup d'état" after his indictment

After four years of investigation, the country's Attorney General has announced the Israeli prime minister's indictment of corruption charges.

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Benjamin Netanyahu at a meeting of right-wing parties in the Knesset in Jerusalem on November 20. ODED BALILTY / AP

In refusing to resign, one hour after the announcement of his indictment on the evening of Thursday, November 21, Benyamin Netanyahu opened an abyssal crisis of Israeli democracy. This is the first time that a prime minister in office makes an appointment with the courts, for acts of corruption, fraud and breach of trust. Mr. Netanyahu lit a fire as a counter-fire: he intends to publicly prosecute his judges and police investigators.

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The gray expression, the tone set, permitting here and there a smile of contempt, the head of government has overthrown, alone in front of a single television camera, the consecrated formula which appears at the head of his indictment: "The State of Israel against Benyamin, son of Benzion Netanyahu. " He is the one who denounces "An attempted coup against a prime minister on the basis of false accusations".

It is he who demands the creation of an independent commission of inquiry, against his prosecutors and against the police officers who have built this file, since 2016. As for his supporters, it is their responsibility "To demand that investigators be investigated".

"A method" to slaughter it

These officials "Dishonest", "Driven by external elements" that Netanyahu does not name, have committed, he deplores, in "A process of wear". Relayed by a hostile press, they follow " a method " to shoot him down. "Every night my blood is spilled and that of my wife and my sonhe says. In which democracy, in what state of law do we live? "

Never had a Prime Minister attacked institutions so violently. But he had drawn his long-standing defense. The Attorney General of the country, Avichai Mandelblit, expected it. In unfolding his indictment to the press, an hour earlier, he devoted most of his speech to defend the legitimacy of his investigation. Tense, fast, eyes often lowered on his text, hesitating to fix the cameras, this former attorney general of the army (2004-2011) recalled his " admiration " for the head of government. A man he had "Honor" to be the secretary of cabinet, between 2013 and 2016, before being appointed by him with confidence in his current position.

Mandelblit, a man of religion, a strictly orthodox Jew, denounced "The intolerable voices that have risen (during the survey) against public authority; hate speech against the justice system and against those who serve it ", that Mr. Netanyahu's relatives distilled. Refusing the appeal "Conspiracy theories", he indignantly " threat " launched against his collaborators. In pure loss. On Thursday, Netanyahu once again focused his attacks on state prosecutor Shai Nitzan.


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