ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 149

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High Court opens deliberations on petition to bar Netanyahu from forming gov’t

The High Court of Justice opens deliberations on whether Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can form a government while under indictment.

Due to limitations on reporters being present in the courtroom, the hearings are being livestreamed.

 

The veteran premier has been charged with accepting improper gifts and illegally trading favors in exchange for favorable media coverage. He denies wrongdoing and his trial is set to start May 24. Israeli law bars an indicted person from serving as an ordinary cabinet minister, but does not compel a criminally-charged prime minister to leave office.

The complication regarding Netanyahu is that he is not currently an ordinary prime minister. He has been serving as the caretaker head of a transitional government through grinding political deadlock.

According to some interpretations of Israeli law, that makes Netanyahu merely a candidate to become prime minister.

— Raoul Wootliff

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