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Netanyahu on son’s comments: Nonsense said while drunk


Israeli Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his son Yair

Israeli Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his son Yair. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded Tuesday for the first time to embarrassing comments his son was taped uttering two years ago, saying his sons words were “nonsense” spoken “under the influence of alcohol.”

Yair Netanyahu was taped in a car in the summer of 2015 after visiting Tel Aviv strip joints making disparaging comments about women and boasting that his father arranged a massive windfall for Kobi Maimon, the father of one of the friends he was talking to in the car, who was involved in a lucrative natural gas deal.

The prime minister, at a meeting with the ambassadors of NATO states in Jerusalem, told reporters that his son had issued an apology for his remarks, and said they neither reflected who he is or the values he was taught at home.

“He is right,” Netanyahu said.” “My wife and I educate our children to respect every person as they are, and every woman as they are, and that is the reason that I fervently oppose the exclusion of women, and have worked in many ways to empower women – in the economy, government, academia, science, the army and air force. Those are the values we believe in, and with which we have educated our children.”

Regarding Yair’s boast to the son of Kobi Maimon, a major shareholder in one of the country’s offshore natural gas fields, that his father arranged a $20 billion for Maimon’s father, Netanyahu said that his son knew nothing about the framework gas deal and was just joking with his friend.

Netanyahu said that he does not know Kobi Maimon, and only met him once years ago. He said that Maimon actually lost out on profits in the gas deal that was approved.

Regarding the broadcast of the tape on Channel 2, Netanyahu said that two other media outlets turned down offers by his son’s driver,  whom he said taped the conversation, to purchase the tape. The prime minister said that Channel 2 should tell the public if they paid thousands of shekels for the tape, and if so, why.

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