Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu called for legislation allowing the public to directly elect the prime minister to prevent a third round of Knesset elections from being held in under a year.
“If you claim that the public knows me and that they are tired of me, let’s go to direct selection. I think the issue of direct elections is starting to become interesting,” Netanyahu said.
He explained why he insisted on serving in the first six months of a unity government and only afterwards to vacate the position for Blue and White chairman Benny Gantz. “They claimed they did not want to sit under a prime minister with an indictment. We said it would be for six months, but it was not accepted. This was to advance the defense alliance, before we would enter the twilight period of the US elections, I said it was important that I stay six months.”
Netanyahu refused to comment on the decision to indict his former attorney David Shimron and former chief of the Israeli Navy Eliezer Marom, among others, for fraud and bribery in the Submarine affair.
“I do not intend to address this. What I had to say on the matter I have said before,” Netanyahu stated.
The prime minister added that he discussed the possibility of a defense alliance with the United States extensively during his meeting with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is Lisbon yesterday.
“The issue that we agreed to promote is the issue of the defense alliance that I think is of great importance. We will make an agreement with full cooperation from the IDF and the security forces, which will preserve the freedom of operation of the State of Israel.”