Photo: Gil Yohanan
High Court of Justice Monday morning
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Photo: Gil Yohanan
Katsav: Will suspend himsel
Photo: Gil Yohanan

Katsav: Will resign if indicted

Petition against President Katsav demanding his resignation withdrawn after Katsav sends letter to attorney general explaining his timetable for suspending himself, then resigning. Katsav: 'Will not hide behind immunity'

President Moshe Katsav dodged a bullet Monday morning after a petition filed against him at the High Court of Justice was withdrawn by the petitioner. The reason for the move: A promise by the president to suspend himself in case of an indictment.


The president's attorney David Libai revealed Katsav's intentions which were written in a letter sent from the president to Attorney General Menachem Mazuz.


The withdrawal of the petition, cancels a deliberation by the court in the matter of the president, and allows him to keep his post until an indictment is handed down by the attorney general. The decision of the president to suspend himself comes despite the "Basic Law: President of the State," which gives the president immunity.


The petitioner, attorney Yossi Fuchs decided to withdraw the petition after the president's attorney Libai told the court that "the president will not seek shelter behind his immunity," and he will suspend himself at first, and then will resign if an indictment is handed down in the president's case of alleged rape, sexual misconduct, and other violations.


'President does not hide behind immunity'

In the letter, the president also explains the timetable for his leaving the Presidential Residence. According to Libai, if Attorney General Mazuz decides to indict the president pending a hearing process, Katsav will suspend himself. However, if the attorney general will uphold the indictment even after the hearing, Katsav will resign.


At the end of the deliberation, Libai said that "the withdrawal of the petition was totally expected."


According to him, the president has immunity from judicial criticism of the High Court. He also said that "the president does not hide behind his immunity and if the attorney general will indict the president pending a hearing, he will approach the Knesset and ask for temporary relief from duty. If the attorney general will stick to the decision to indict even after the hearing, he will not argue for his immunity but resign his post."


The Petitioner in the case attorney Yossi Fuchs said after the deliberation that "the petition has caused a turnaround, and only because of the petition, the president announced his intentions to the attorney general."


פרסום ראשון: 11.27.06, 11:41
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