Lieberman resignation takes effect

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Avigdor Lieberman’s resignation as Israel’s foreign minister took effect Dec. 18, and Israel’s attorney general postponed filing an indictment for fraud and breach of trust against him.

Lieberman remains a member of the Knesset and the head of the Yisrael Beiteinu Party.

His resignation came six days after Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein closed a 12-year investigation of Lieberman, dismissing most of the charges. But Weinstein indicted him for fraud and breach of trust for advancing former ambassador to Belarus Ze’ev Ben Aryeh’s position in the Foreign Ministry, allegedly in exchange for information about an investigation against Lieberman being conducted in Belarus. Last spring, Ben Aryeh confessed that he had received and passed documents to Lieberman in 2008.

Also on Dec. 18, Israel’s Justice Ministry announced that it would postpone filing the indictment against Lieberman, which had been scheduled for the same day. No reason was given for the postponement. — jta