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Police to indict Israeli PM Netanyahu in bribery and breach of trust case

Jerusalem (APP): Israeli police recommended on Tuesday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu be indicted on bribery and breach of trust charges in a pair of corruption cases, dealing an embarrassing blow to the embattled leader that is likely to fuel calls for him to step down.

Netanyahu angrily rejected the accusations, which included accepting nearly $300,000 in gifts from a pair of billionaires. He accused police of being on a witch hunt, vowed to remain in office and even seek re-election.

“I will continue to lead the state of Israel responsibly and loyally as long as you, the citizens of Israel, choose me to lead you,” an ashen-faced Netanyahu said in a televised address. “I am sure that the truth will come to light. And I am sure that also in the next election that will take place on time I will win your trust again with God’s help.”

The recommendations now go to Attorney General Avihai Mendelblit, who will review the material before deciding whether to file charges.

Netanyahu can remain in office during that process, which could drag on for months.

Military trial of Palestinian teenager opens behind closed doors

Jerusalem (APP): A Palestinian teenager charged after a viral video showed her hitting two Israeli soldiers in a case that has gained global attention went on trial in military court on Tuesday in closed-door proceedings.

The judge in the trial ordered journalists removed from the courtroom, ruling that open proceedings would not be in the interest of 17-year-old Ahed Tamimi, who is being tried as a minor.

Only family members were allowed to remain in the courtroom, with diplomats present to observe also asked to leave.

A large crowd of local and international journalists had shown up to cover the trial of Tamimi, who has become something of an icon for Palestinians and supporters of their cause worldwide.

Trials of minors in military court are typically closed, but Tamimi´s lawyer said previous hearings for the teenager were open and she argued for it to remain that way.