Netanyahu: I will quit all my ministerial duties by January 1

Under the gun by a High Court of Justice petition, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Thursday that he will be dropping all of his portfolios by January 1 – besides his role as premier.

Currently, besides being prime minister, Netanyahu is health minister, social welfare minister, Diaspora minister and acting agricultural minister.

Pressure for Netanyahu to drop these portfolios spiked after Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit announced a final indictment against him on November 21.

Shortly afterward, the Movement for Quality Government in Israel filed a petition to the High Court both to get Netanyahu fired as prime minister and to force his resignation from his other ministerial roles.

On November 25, Mandelblit defended Netanyahu’s ability to remain prime minister, but deferred his view on whether he could keep the other roles, hinting that he understood that Netanyahu would voluntarily resign them.