Netanyahu Agrees to Hand Over Ministerial Portfolios

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. (Marc Israel Sellem/POOL)

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu‏‏ said on Thursday that he will relinquish the several ministerial portfolios which he holds, while continuing in office as prime minister.

The announcement comes amid legal pressure from petitioners to the High Court.

Netanyahu currently serves as health minister, social welfare minister, Diaspora minister and acting agricultural minister. He was also defense minister until recently appointing Naftali Bennett to that post.

Following Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit’s decision to indict Netanyahu on corruption charges, the Movement for Quality Government in Israel filed a petition to the Court demanding his removal from all ministerial roles, including prime minister.

Mandelblit ruled that Netanyahu’s could remain prime minister, while leaving the question of the several ministeries unresolved.

The attorney general notified the Court after Netanyahu’s announcement on Thursday that he no longer sees a need for him to submit a formal opinion on the matter.