21:48 GMT29 January 2020
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    The Israeli prime minister in November 2019 was indicted on charges of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust after three high-profile cases against him cleared numerous bureaucratic obstacles over several years. The development came after the embattled PM failed to form new government twice in one year.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised a decision by the nation's high court, which ruled that the indicted government head, if he wins in the upcoming March 2020 general election, would be permitted to form a new government. The prime minister asserted that the permission should never have been required.

    "It should be clear, we think that this doesn’t need to be deliberated at all because the choice of the people [for] who will lead the nation is the choice of the people only and not anyone else", Netanyahu said.

    Netanyahu's key opponent, Benny Gantz of the Blue and White Alliance, also praised the ruling. Gantz argued that he prefers to defeat his rival at the ballot box.

    "I respect and accept the correct decision of the High Court of Justice. We will take Netanyahu to the court of public opinion at the polls — and win", Gantz said.

    Netanyahu, in spite of the numerous charges against him and increasing national unpopularity, recently re-secured his post as Likud Party head for the 2 March general election despite facing criminal charges in three corruption cases. He was indicted on accusations of bribery, fraud, and breach of trust on 21 November 2019, as the three cases against him gained enough popular traction, after being stalled for years.

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    Benny Gantz, Israel's High Court of Justice, Israel
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