Erlich welcomes leaders’ support

Erlich welcomes leaders’ support

'For everyone watching the case around the world, it sends a boost that leaders are willing to stand up for this'.

Yaakov Litzman.
Photo: Gali Tibbon/Pool Photo via AP
Yaakov Litzman. Photo: Gali Tibbon/Pool Photo via AP

DASSI Erlich this week welcomed the outpouring of support for her and other alleged victims of Malka Leifer following Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision late last year to appoint Yaakov Litzman as Health Minister.

Erlich said she was shocked and devastated at the appointment of Litzman, who Israeli police allege has been helping alleged child sexual abuser Malka Leifer evade justice.

“The biggest worry for us is that the psychiatrists who are currently writing a report answer to Litzman,” Erlich said, speaking to The AJN ahead of the next hearing.

“What does this mean for the next report?”

Psychiatrists are due to submit a report by today (Friday) and the contents of the report will be presented to court on Tuesday (January 14).
The report is set to determine if Leifer is fit to proceed to extradition proceedings to face 75 charges in relation to child sexual abuse in Australia.

Erlich said leaders publicly supporting the cause is heartwarming.

“For everyone watching the case around the world, it sends a boost that leaders are willing to stand up for this,” Erlich said.

Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ) president Jillian Segal said earlier this month she was “shocked by the appointment of Yaakov Litzman to a senior cabinet position despite an ongoing investigation over serious allegations of breach of trust and fraud, in relation to Yaakov Litzman’s role in obstructing the extradition of Malka Leifer”.

“These are matters that are considered in Australia as gravely serious and we would like to think they are considered with the same seriousness in Israel.”

Zionist Federation of Australia’s president Jeremy Leibler wrote to Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stating that, “neither the Jewish community nor the Australian people, nor the community of Australian olim deserve to be treated this way” and urged him to reconsider Litzman’s appointment.

Slamming the appointment as “deplorable”, the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council said “How do you balance moral integrity and pure political survival? We think the Prime Minister has badly erred in prioritising the latter over the former on this occasion.”

Federal Member for Macnamara Josh Burns said the move was “deeply disappointing” while former Victorian premier Ted Baillieu described it as “wilful contempt for Leifer’s victims”.

Calling for Leifer’s extradition “without delay”, the Australasian Union of Jewish Students passed a motion at the recent World Union of Jewish Students Congress stating that Litzman’s appointment while he is under investigation “is an insult and an outrage”


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