Netanyahu's wife hits back after employee abuse claims

2015-05-11 16:24
(Sebastian Scheiner, AP)

(Sebastian Scheiner, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Jerusalem - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's wife Sara has hit back at what she says is a smear campaign over her alleged mistreatment of domestic employees, media reported on Monday.

She railed that her "blood has been spilled publicly" at an ongoing trial on Sunday over her alleged abuse of the former caretaker at the premier's residence, just months after she was alleged to have pocketed public funds through bottle deposits.

"It's hard to be Sara Netanyahu with what they do to us, spilling blood," newspapers quoted her as saying.

In March, former caretaker Meni Naftali sued the prime minister's office and the Netanyahus for 650 000 shekels ($170 000) in compensation for alleged abuse, in a lawsuit that saw petty recriminations aired by both sides.

Naftali was quoted by Ynet news website as saying that in nearly two years of employment between 2011 and 2012, he was treated in a "patronising way".

He said this included "uncontrolled tongue-lashings" from Sara Netanyahu.

In one incident, Naftali says the premier's wife rebuked him at 03:00 one day for buying milk that was not in a carton, Ynet reported.

The caretaker also alleged he was not paid for overtime and that the premier's office reneged on a promise to give him a permanent job.

At Sunday's hearing in the case, Netanyahu accused Naftali of hitting her son's friends when they visited the residence, the Jerusalem Post reported.

The case was adjourned, and it was unclear when the next hearing will be.

The Netanyahus have dismissed the allegations as an attempt to sully their image.

Before Netanyahu's March re-election campaign, media reported that his wife had pocketed at least $1 000 worth of public cash by collecting the deposits on empty bottles returned from the official residence.

Her husband denied the allegations.

A report by the government watchdog also said Sara Netanyahu had called in an electrician for their private seaside residence home in northern Israel every weekend for three months, including on a public holiday when staff were off and unable to assess whether work was urgently needed.

The Netanyahus have complained that the reports were part of a media smear campaign, which commentators say was waged in part by media mogul Arnon Moses, head of the Yediot Aharonot newspaper and Ynet, who firmly opposed Netanyahu remaining prime minister.

Mrs Netanyahu on Sunday compared Moses to "he who cannot be named", a character in the popular Harry Potter books and movies.

This was a reference to the villain Lord Voldemort, the Times of Israel news website reported.

Benjamin Netanyahu was re-elected for his third consecutive term on March 17, and formed a right-wing religious government last week.

Read more on:    benjamin netanyahu  |  israel

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.