Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today filed a lawsuit with the Jerusalem Magistrates Court against Hebrew daily "Ma'ariv" and Channel 10 News over the investigative report by Raviv Drucker about Netanyahu's donors in the Likud primaries in 2005. He is demanding NIS 1 million from each respondent.
Netanyahu's statement of claim says, "The mention of the prime minister in the mendacious article is contemptuous and very hurtful. It creates a negative image and presents him as a criminal in a way that humiliates in the eyes of society and to make him a target of ridicule and mockery for alleged acts which have no factual basis."
The statement of claim says that Channel 10 and Drucker published the article "maliciously and in bad faith, as part of a witch-hunt against Netanyahu. The blood of the prime minister will not be spilled with impunity. There is no place to allow a witch-hunt of the prime minister when there is not an iota of truth in the facts."
The lawsuit for libel against "Ma'ariv" is based on the report, which Netanyahu claims "gives the reader the erroneous impression that the value of dinner eaten by Netanyahu and his wife is NIS 60,000, and that similar dinners were part of their supposedly 'spendthrift travels'."
Netanyahu's attorney said that Netanyahu and his wife "never ate a dinner whose cost approaches the value stated in the article's headline and the impression obtained from reading the article and the subhead is erroneous and misleading."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on March 29, 2011
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