Bloomberg News

Netanyahu Aide to Resign With Plea in Sexual Harassment Case

February 20, 2012

(Updates with response from Netanyahu spokesman in fourth paragraph.)

Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- A top aide to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will resign in exchange for the dropping of an investigation into allegations he sexually harassed a female staff member, the Justice Ministry said.

Natan Eshel, Netanyahu’s chief of staff, agreed to admit to taking “inappropriate” photos of the unidentified woman and searching her private e-mails, the Justice Ministry said today in an e-mailed statement.

He will receive a severe reprimand and won’t be allowed to seek another government job, it said. Eshel has been on leave since the allegations became public in late January.

Netanyahu had no immediate comment on the matter, spokesman Mark Regev said in a telephone interview.

--Editors: Andrew J. Barden, Claudia Maedler

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Ferziger in Tel Aviv at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at

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