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Last Updated: Monday, 16 October 2006, 09:41 GMT 10:41 UK
Israeli press turns on Katsav
Israeli Press

Israeli newspapers are united in their assessment that President Moshe Katsav is in great difficulty after Israeli police recommended charges against him including rape, fraud and wire-tapping.

While one commentator concedes that Mr Katsav is innocent until proven guilty, there is a general feeling that his position has become untenable.

Even though a formal decision still has to be taken on whether to charge Mr Katsav, one daily demands that he resign immediately "to save his presidency's honour".

NAHUM BARNEA IN YEDIOT AHARONOT

A police recommendation is not a charge sheet and a charge sheet is not a conviction. Moshe Katsav the man is innocent as long as the opposite is not proved. But the man is one thing and the president is another. President Moshe Katsav cannot go on for long in his position... Moshe Katsav served the presidency for six years and the presidency served him. A separation is unavoidable.

MOSHE GORALI IN MAARIV

There is no precedent of a charge sheet against a president. There is no precedent of such grave charges against a public figure. Even if 10% of what is attributed to President Katsav is right the gravity is inconceivable... Even if it transpires that on the scale between sexual harassment and rape he is closer to the lower threshold, he is still in a bad position. If it's proved that he raped he is due for long imprisonment.

ZEEV SEGAL IN HAARETZ

If President Moshe Katsav wished to save his presidency's honour, his own health and the public's faith in the institution of the presidency, he would leave the president's residence this very morning... If the president does not resign today, he will find himself at the head of an institution whose foundations he has destroyed... The president's conduct proves that the presidency really does need to go.

NITZAN KIDAR IN HATZOFE

The investigation material does not leave many doubts - the accusations are grave and even if only a small part of them is correct, the man who serves in the most representative position in the state cannot go on serving in office... Within a few weeks Katsav will be forced to decide: If any pinch of shame is left in him the decision will be to go home.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.



MIDDLE EAST PRESS PROFILES
 

SEE ALSO
Katsav avoids parliament opening
16 Oct 06 |  Middle East
Police back Katsav rape charges
16 Oct 06 |  Middle East
The press in Israel
08 May 06 |  Middle East

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