FM: I'll Resign if Indicted

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JERUSALEM, Israel - Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said he will resign if Attorney General Menachem Mazuz issues an indictment against him.

Last week, Israel Police recommended that Lieberman be indicted on a variety of charges, including fraud, bribery, money laundering and obstruction of justice.

"I'm happy that after great efforts and an appeal to the High Court of Justice, an investigation has at least reached its conclusion,and I hope the State Attorney's Office will provide a swift answer," Lieberman told members of Yisrael Beiteinu, the party he chairs.

"I must note that I reviewed everything I said in the questioning sessions and I am at peace with all of my actions. If I had the opportunity to do things again, I would do the same," he said.

"As far as I'm concerned, the watershed will be the final decision following a hearing, whenever and however it will take place. If after the hearing, the attorney general decides to serve an indictment, at that moment I will resign (as foreign minister)," he said.

Lieberman said he would stay in the Knesset and continue as party chairman for an estimated three to five months to ensure an orderly transition.

"My assessment is that in another year and even two, I will remain party chairman and foreign minister, and even in the next elections [I'll be part of] winning 20 mandates [for Yisrael Beiteinu]," he said.

Former foreign minister and Kadima party chairwoman Tzipi Livni was quick to criticize Leiberman for suggesting that the police were politically motivated. She also denounced Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for not taking an active role in the matter.

Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch (Yisrael Beiteinu) responded to Livni's criticism.

"As the minister in charge of the police [force], I support the police and the investigation team, who are doing their work well and professionally," a former deputy police chief, told reporters.

"Livni, who sat in a government while members of her party were being investigated, is the last one who can scold anyone," he said.

Source: The Jerusalem Post

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