News / Middle East

Israeli Foreign Minister Quits After Indictment

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman speaks at a conference for young members of his Yisrael Beiteinu party in Tel Aviv December 13, 2012.
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman speaks at a conference for young members of his Yisrael Beiteinu party in Tel Aviv December 13, 2012.
Reuters
— Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman resigned on Friday after being charged with fraud and breach of trust, in a move that could have repercussions on next month's election.

 "I have decided to resign my post as foreign minister and deputy prime minister and ... also to remove my [parliamentary] immunity forthwith so I can end this matter quickly, without delay and clear my name absolutely,'' Lieberman said in an emailed statement.

Israel's Justice Ministry said on Thursday it would charge Lieberman over alleged irregularities tied to the promotion of an Israeli diplomat who had leaked him privileged information about a police probe into his activities.

More serious allegations, including money-laundering and bribery, were dropped, but even the lesser charges cast a cloud over his political future and within 24 hours of receiving the ministry report, he decided to stand down.

It was unclear if he would still stand in the January 22 general election, although Israeli newspapers have suggested he might be forced to sit on the sidelines as the judicial case moved ahead.

Lieberman's right-wing party Yisrael Beiteinu (Our Home is Israel) and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud group have formed an electoral pact ahead of the ballot and opinion polls had predicted they would win.

 An outspoken foreign minister and a powerful partner in the governing coalition, Lieberman is known for his nationalistic rhetoric, making it a key component of his election campaigning.
       
Without the Moldovan-born politician near the top of the bill, some pollsters have speculated that the combined group will see a slippage in support.

An official in the prime minister's office said Netanyahu would serve as acting foreign minister until the election.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Jason Wreight from: LaTrobe City, Australia
December 14, 2012 4:57 PM
A crooked Israeli politician?? That's not news! The only unusual thing here is that he's lost his job. I'm offering 25/1 that he'll be milking some other taxpayer-funded government position in a week or two.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid