19:24 GMT +317 October 2019
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    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives an address at the London Stock Exchange in the City of London, Friday, Nov. 3, 2017.

    Netanyahu Denies Claims He Tried to Dig up Dirt on Police Amid Corruption Probe

    © AP Photo / Matt Dunham
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    Political tensions are on the rise in Israel as the anti-corruption investigation into the Prime Minister is reportedly entering its final phase and may result in the forced resignation of the country’s long-standing leader.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has slammed the police commissioner’s claims that he had assigned private detectives to spy on the investigators who were probing him in response to graft allegations as “ridiculous.”

    "It is shocking to discover that the commissioner has repeated the mistaken and ridiculous suggestion that Prime Minister Netanyahu sent private investigators after the police who are investigating him," the Israeli Prime Minister said in a Facebook post.

    The statement comes in the wake of the Monday interview of Roni Alsheich, a police commissioner, who said that Netanyahu tried to discredit the corruption probe by sending private detectives tasked to nose out dirt on investigators.

    The investigation of Netanyahu over corruption allegations is nearing the end and the Times of Israel is reporting that police are expected to recommend that the Prime Minister be charged with bribery, fraud, and breach of public trust.  

    READ MORE: Majority of Israelis Say Netanyahu Should Resign If Charged With Bribery — Poll

    Netanyahu is being probed for allegations that he accepted luxurious gifts, such as expensive cigars and champagne from wealthy supporters and made a secret deal with a newspaper publisher in order to get favorable coverage of his government’s work.

    The corruption allegations have sparked a backlash across Israel, with people staging "Marches of Shame" in cities against reported corruption by Netanyahu.  The Saturday poll by Hadashot TV news also showed that up to 60 percent of Israelis want the Prime Minister to step down if police recommend indicting Netanyahu.

    However, it can take the Prosecutor general weeks or even months to make a decision based on the police's recommendations.

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    graft, probe, protest, Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel
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