Former Mossad Chief Pardo Denies He Opposed Cohen Appointment

YERUSHALAYIM -
Mossad Chief Tamir Pardo (David Vaaknin/Pool/Flash90)
Mossad Chief Tamir Pardo. (David Vaaknin/Pool/Flash90)

Outgoing Mossad chief Tamir Pardo denied on Tuesday that he had opposed the choice of National Security Advisor Yossi Cohen to succeed him.

In an unusual move, Pardo issued an official statement saying that he considered all three of the final candidates mentioned for the Mossad post fully qualified and would act to ensure an orderly transition with whomever the prime minister chose to succeed him.

The public statement of the head of the Mossad came following media reports that Pardo had advised Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu not to choose Cohen, but Pardo’s current deputy, N. (name withheld for security reasons).

The Prime Minister’s Office reiterated that “there is no basis to the reports about last-minute pressure applied to the prime minister.”

Similarly, the PMO declared that Pardo telephoned Yossi Cohen immediately after his appointment was announced, congratulated him, and set up an appointment with him to begin transition briefings.