Protesters have gathered on the streets of Tel Aviv, calling for the resignation of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over growing allegations of corruption. “You take from the poor to give to the rich,” and “Send Netanyahu to prison” were among the slogans the demonstrators chanted during their Saturday march.
Netanyahu is currently under investigation for several separate charges of corruption. One involves him allegedly proposing commercial favors to an Israeli newspaper owner in return for positive coverage. Last week, a recording emerged of Netanyahu offering the owner of the Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper a reduction in the circulation of the pro-Netanyahu newspaper, Israel Hayom, if Arnon Mozes’ paper took a more favorable stance towards him. A drop in the circulation of Hayom would be a direct benefit to Mozes as it is his main rival in advertising revenues.
Another investigation is related to charges of receiving illegal donations and gifts amounting to around some $100,000 in cigars and alcoholic beverages. He is also under investigation over suspicions that he accepted one million euros (about 1.1 million dollars) from French fraudster Arnaud Mimran for campaign funds during the 2009 Israeli elections. The Netanyahu family has faced scrutiny over accusations that their lifestyles are out of touch with regular Israelis. Netanyahu’s wife, Sara, has also come under fire for her lavish tastes and abusive behavior toward staff members.