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Aide to Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu agrees to turn state witness

The prime minister’s spokesman Nir Hefetz is the third member of his entourage to agree to give evidence against his boss.

A third confidant of Benjamin Netanyahu has agreed to turn state witness and give evidence against the Israeli prime minister, who faces a wave of corruption allegations, according to media reports in the country.

Long-time Netanyahu family spokesman Nir Hefetz agreed on Monday to speak in return for a more lenient punishment, multiple reports said.

He joins Shlomo Filber, another long-time aide, enmeshed in scandal.

Both are under arrest on suspicion of promoting regulation worth hundreds of millions of dollars to Israel’s Bezeq telecom company in return for favourable coverage of Mr Netanyahu and his family by the firm’s popular news website.

Israeli police have recommended indicting Mr Netanyahu for bribery, fraud and breach of trust in two separate cases.

Long-time aide Ari Harow is a state witness in one of those.

Mr Netanyahu has denied any wrongdoing.

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