German prosecutors to scrutinize sale of submarines to Israel





Dusseldorf -By Erich Reimann,- The German judiciary is to turn its attentions on the sale of submarines to Israel in light of a suspected corruption scandal that has put Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu under pressure.
Prosecutors in the western city of Bochum have opened investigations into possible corruption by an unnamed party or parties, a spokesman said on Tuesday.



 
The German newspaper Handelsblatt previously reported that investigators are scrutinizing whether bribes were taken in a 2-billion-dollar deal. The Bochum prosecutors said the investigation came off the back of international media reports.
The accusations of wrongdoing relate to Israel's acquisition of submarines and naval vessels from Germany's ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS). Israeli police are convinced that the deal involved bribes and money laundering. Last year they said they saw grounds for prosecution of several suspects.
Netanyahu is not a suspect in the case, but police interviewed him over the affair.
Israeli media reported last week that the attorney general was examining conflict-of-interest allegations against Netanyahu involving shares in a company that was managed by his cousin and that was later acquired by a supplier firm for ThyssenKrupp.
ThyssenKrupp declined to comment on the German judiciary's involvement but stressed it was "currently not the subject of investigations."
The German government approved the sale of the three submarines to Israel in autumn 2017. Berlin said it felt a special obligation towards Israel's security.

Tuesday, March 26th 2019
By Erich Reimann,
           


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