Netanyahu defiant, 'I will remain PM of Israel'

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (AFP)
Updated 14 February 2018
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Netanyahu defiant, 'I will remain PM of Israel'

JERUSALEM: PM Netanyahu’s reaction to the police recommendation to indict him, came in a televised speech where the PM insisted that he did nothing wrong and that he “will continue to lead” like he did all his life working for Israel, and that he will remain Prime Minister.
PM Netanyahu chose to address the public directly on television insisting that:”These (police) recommendations mean nothing in a democratic society” and he added that he will “continue to lead Israel responsibly and faithfully.”
Netanyahu went on to say that he did what he did for the sake of the country, not for “cigars from friends and not for better media coverage.” 
Earlier, Israeli Police recommended indicting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in two corruption cases.
The recommendations by the police do not immediately threaten Netanyahu, but they are deeply embarrassing and could fuel calls for him to step aside.
For months, police have been investigating two cases. In one probe, Netanyahu reportedly received over $100,000 in gifts from Hollywood mogul Arnon Milchan and other wealthy supporters.
The other is over secret talks with the publisher of a major Israeli newspaper in which Netanyahu allegedly requested positive coverage in exchange for reining in a free pro-Netanyahu daily.
The attorney general will now review the police conclusions and decide whether to file charges.
 


Saudi Arabia pledges $100m to help ‘stabilize’ Syria’s northeast

Updated 17 August 2018
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Saudi Arabia pledges $100m to help ‘stabilize’ Syria’s northeast

  • United States, which leads the anti-Daesh coalition, expressed its  thanks for the funds
  • The money will help ensure the militants cannot re-emerge as a threat

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has contributed $100 million to help reconstruct areas of north-eastern Syria formerly held by Daesh.

The Kingdom said the contribution would go toward a campaign by the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS to “stabilize” the former Daesh bastion and help ensure the militants cannot re-emerge as a threat.

The United States, which leads the coalition, expressed its  thanks and appreciation to Riyadh.

“This significant contribution is critical to stabilization and early recovery efforts,” a State Department spokeswoman said. “Saudi Arabia has been a leading partner in the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS from the outset.”

The funds are the biggest single financial  contribution yet for reconstruction efforts in areas formerly controlled by the extremists.

The money would “save lives, help facilitate the return of displaced Syrians, and help ensure that Daesh cannot reemerge to threaten Syria, its neighbors, or plan attacks against the international community,” the Saudi Embassy in Washington said.

The contribution aims to support “stabilization projects” and “will play a critical role in the coalition’s efforts to revitalize communities, such as Raqqa, that have been devastated by Daesh terrorists.”

The statement said the money showed Saudi Arabia’s continued commitment to serve as a stabilizing force in the region.

The funds, part of a pledge made by Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir last month, will go towards projects to restore essential services in the areas of health, agriculture, electricity, water, education, and transportation.

The United Nations has said reconstruction in Syria would cost at least $250 billion. The Daesh takeover of large areas of territory in Syria and Iraq in 2014 led to huge levels of destruction. 

A conference on the reconstruction of Iraq held in Kuwait in February raised $30 billion in funding commitment. Saudi Arabia said at the event it would contribute $1.5 billion in financial and reconstruction support. 

Saudi Arabia also hosted the founding conference for the coalition in Jeddah in September 2014, and soon after flew the first air missions to bomb Daesh targets in Syria.