Amidror Denies Conflict of Interest, Has Not Quit Job

YERUSHALAYIM (Reuters/Hamodia) -

Israel’s Justice Ministry announced that it was examining whether Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s national security adviser had a conflict of interest regarding the fast-developing energy industry.

Yaakov Amidror, whose term is due to end this year, denied violating a “conflict of interest agreement” he had signed when he entered Netanyahu’s inner circle in 2011.

In addition, Amidror denounced as a “libelous lie” a Haaretz story Tuesday that he quit his position stemming from the allegation.

“First, I did not quit my job,” Amidror said in a statement.

“Second, I did not take part in Tzemach Committee discussions [on the future of the country’s gas economy] and the position of the National Security Council on the matter was taken without my participation.”

Amidror, officials said on Tuesday, had, prior to becoming National Security Advisor, served briefly as an advisor to U.S. exploration company Noble Energy, which in recent years made large natural gas discoveries off Israel’s shore.

The Justice Ministry said in a statement that it had received “information of apparent involvement by Mr. Yaakov Amidror in the matter of energy.”

The attorney general questioned Amidror and the issue is now being examined, the ministry said.