Attorney General Finds No Case Against Weizman for PLO Contacts

Attorney General Yosef Harish has found insufficient evidence to bring a case against Ezer Weizman, who was removed from the Inner Cabinet last month because of his alleged contacts with the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Harish announced his conclusion Thursday evening, after studying the results of a police investigation into the activities of Weizman, who is minister of science and development.

Weizman, a Laborite who has long advocated negotiations with the Palestinians, including the PLO, said he is gratified by the attorney general’s decision, but wants to study it in detail before commenting further.

The Likud-Labor unity coalition government was badly shaken when Shamir announced without warning at a Jan. 1 Cabinet meeting that he was firing Weizman because of his sustained contacts with the PLO.

Shamir alleged that the former air force commander and one-time defense minister briefed PLO leaders on how to respond to Israeli and American diplomatic moves.

Angry Laborites threatened to break up the government. But a compromise was quickly reached, whereby Weizman was forced to resign from the 12-member Inner Cabinet, the government’s top policy-making body, while retaining the science portfolio.

Shamir made clear, however, that he hoped Weizman eventually would be forced to leave the government altogether.

He asked the police to undertake an investigation with a view toward bringing criminal charges against Weizman for violation of the Anti-Terror Law. The law forbids Israelis from having any contact with members of a terrorist organization.

Legal observers said the attorney general’s finding that Weizman has no case to answer means the issue can be considered closed.

Right-wingers were enraged. Likud Knesset member Tzahi Hanegbi said he would apply to the High Court of Justice to reverse the attorney general’s “strange” decision.

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