Breaking: Israeli President Moshe Katsav indicted for rape

Israeli President Moshe Katsav was considering
whether to step down after the attorney general said he faced
indictment on charges of rape and abuse of power — the most serious
accusation against a top Israeli official in the country’s history.

Katsav’s lawyers were defiant in the hours
after the dramatic Justice Ministry announcement Tuesday, but Katsav
was planning a news conference later Wednesday, and Israeli media were
speculating that he would suggest a temporary leave from his post.

The allegation that Katsav used his position
as Israel’s ceremonial head of state — a job supposed to serve as the
nation’s moral compass — to force himself on his female employees has
left the nation reeling.

“It is a sad day for the state of Israel,”
said lawmaker Benny Elon, who called on Katsav to resign to spare the
nation further trauma. But Katsav gave no indication that he was
preparing to step down, despite a wave of demands that he quit.

Israeli President Facing Rape Charge

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