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February 28, 2019 3:34 pm

After Indictments Announcement, Top Netanyahu Challenger Gantz Calls on PM to Resign

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

Benny Gantz speaks at the annual Munich Security Conference in Germany, Feb. 17, 2019. Photo: Reuters / Andreas Gebert.

Head of the Blue and White joint list Benny Gantz called on Thursday on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to resign following Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit’s announcement that Netanyahu would be indicted on corruption charges.

Gantz, a former IDF chief of staff, is seen as Netanyahu’s rival election rival and Blue and White is currently running ahead of Netanyahu’s Likud in the polls.

Calling it “a painful day for every Israeli patriot,” Gantz stated, “I know Netanyahu very well … I saw him in good times and hard times, I know how much he loves Israel. The Netanyahu I knew would not drag the people into a situation where there is a part-time prime minister.”

“Just imagine a prime minister whose dealings with his legal situation take up most of his day,” Gantz continued. “The State of Israel deserves more than that.”

“I call on you to resign your office,” Gantz said, directly addressing the prime minister.

“I would expect you to conduct your struggle as a private citizen, and I wish you success in that,” he added.

“Mr. Netanyahu, do not forget, this country is all of ours, and there is no question here of right or left, because Israel comes before everything else,” Gantz noted.

“Today, to my sorrow, you have chosen to march down a path that is not befitting an Israeli prime minister,” he declared. “Instead of choosing what is best for the people, you are choosing what is best for yourself personally.”

“Mr. Netanyahu, this country is precious to us and I am convinced it is precious to you also,” he went on to say.

Gantz clarified that as long as Netanyahu was under indictment, Blue and White would not sit in a government with him.

Netanyahu has said unequivocally that he would not resign. In a combative speech after the indictments were announced, Netanyahu claimed the charges against him were the result of a left-wing witch hunt and he would prove his innocence.

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