The Channel 2 News report accusing Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon of widespread corruption has rattled the country’s political establishment. Opposition MKs are calling on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to return Danon to Israel and launch an investigation.
Danon at the UN Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News
After Channel 2 News aired a report accusing Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon (Likud) of widespread political corruption, members of the opposition are calling for him to be returned to Israel and questioned.
Labor Party leader Avi Gabbay praised the report, saying that it exposes “another brick in the wall of corruption surrounding the Likud.” Meretz MKs Michal Rozin and Mossi Raz called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “to order Danon to return to Israel immediately.”
“In light of these suspicions, it is inconceivable that Danny Danon will continue to represent the State of Israel at the UN,” they added. Rozin even uploaded to her Twitter page a picture of MKs watching the televised report.
The Jewish National Fund has launched an investigation Photo Credit: Channel 2 News
Meanwhile, Jewish National Fund officials responded on Tuesday to the report after their organization’s name came up several times in it. “An extensive review has already begun,” they said. According to the report, Danon had considerable influence on the appointments and budgets for national institutions when he was the head of the World Likud organization, one of the World Zionist Organization’s world unions. Over the years, Danon became increasing interested in the organization’s Doing Zionism division. Six years ago, he named Yaakov Hagoel, who is related to him, as the head of the division.
This is when, according to the report, the connection between the Jewish National Fund and the division began. In 2011, the Jewish National Fund sent absolutely no funding to Doing Zionism. However, the funding from the Jewish National Fund suddenly began to pour a year later. In 2012, the Jewish National Fund gave almost two million NIS to Doing Zionism; in 2013, more than seven million NIS; in 2014, 15,000 million NIS.
The Channel 2 News report accused Danon of appointing his friends and their relatives to positions in the division and using public funds to pay their high salaries. In exchange, these Likud supporters would vote for Danon when he ran for a political position. They would also be rewarded for recruiting new Likud registered voters.
When asked for a comment, Danon denied the allegations and accused Channel 2 News of attempting to defame him.