High Court Throws Out Petition to Disqualify Netanyahu from Office

By Hamodia Staff

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu seen during a press conference on Wednesday. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

YERUSHALAYIM – Israel’s High Court has rejected a petition to declare Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu unfit to hold office, but left the door open for consideration of such a ruling in the future.

The Israeli Democracy Guard filed its petition on Wednesday, calling on the court “to instruct” the government and Attorney General Gali Baharav-Miara “to determine that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is unable to fulfill his duties as prime minister,” arguing that he should be removed due to his ongoing criminal trial, an alleged conflict of interest, and his actions to promote what they termed a “regime coup d’etat.”

The justices said on Thursday that they would not consider the petition, on the grounds that “other procedures have not been exhausted” on the issue, thereby suggesting that the requested procedure might yet be a possibility.

In its petition to the court, the Israeli Democracy Guard wrote that there is “a serious and real concern that there is a direct connection between the government plan” to radically overhaul the justice system “and the criminal cases against Netanyahu — and the main purpose of the plan is to help [Netanyahu] escape prosecution,” a charge that has been made many times by the opposition.

Netanyahu is currently on trial for charges of bribery, fraud and breach of trust, in all of which he has denied any wrongdoing and accused the police investigators and state prosecutors of conducting a “witch hunt” against him.

On Monday, Baharav-Miara denied reports that she had been discussing the possibility of ordering Netanyahu to take a leave of absence from the premiership, after she received a scathing letter from coalition parties warning that any such maneuver would be tantamount to a coup.

“An attempt to declare or announce such a move for an incumbent leader is a clearly illegal attempt to depose and overthrow an elected and legal government, without an iota of justification by the law,” the letter warned.

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