According to Haaretz, the Israeli Attorney-General, Avichai Mendelblit, has filed a corruption charge against sitting prime-minister Benjamin Netanyahu. They say that this

may include charges of bribery and breaches of trust - but the corruption it represents goes much deeper.

They go on to say, that although this isn’t the first time a sitting prime-minister has been charged with criminal activity

the charges brought ... will be unprecedented in Israel: This time the objective was not cash, gifts or jobs, but rather favourable press coverage, perhaps combined with hostile press coverage of rival press outlets ... the case involves allegations that Netanyahu sought to wield influence over regulators on behalf of Israel’s largest telecom company in exchange for biased coverage on the Walla news site.

Then they add:

The Attorney-General has been given the opportunity and responsibility to thoroughly uproot the ingrained and institutionalised corruption underlying media-politics relations in Israel. Of all the cases involving the prime-minister, this is a game changer ...

They add that the transcripts of conversations between the publisher of the media outlet, Yedioth Ahronoth Group paint him

not as a publisher, editor or journalist, but as someone running a protection organisation: a sort of mafia, that offers its services to those in positions of power, in this case, the prime-minister.

Q. Given that this is unprecedented, is there any indication what course of action will be taken here by the Attorney-General?

  • I assume this question is in regards to what action he can take against any corrupt media actions, as he has filed charges against Netenyahu? – user19831 Mar 5 '19 at 12:45
  • This question seem to be more in the legal rather than political domain, doesn't it? – Björn Lindqvist Mar 5 '19 at 17:09
  • @BjornLindqiest: It importantly is part of both. – Mozibur Ullah Mar 9 '19 at 8:49

Basically, the same course of action taken against any civil servant in this situation. First, a hearing, if Netanyahu wishes to have one. If he fails to persuade the attorney-general in the hearing not to file charges to the court, or gives up the hearing, charges will be submitted to the court and Netanyahu will have to answer them.

Bare in mind, that Haaretz is very critical of Netanyahu, so it's likely that it will somewhat exaggerate on the weight of the charges. Mendelblit is not out to change the politics-media relationship. He is in charge of enforcing the law, and that's exactly what he'll do.

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