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Israeli media: Netanyahu sought good press

The Associated Press

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, center, attends the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem, on Sunday.

The Associated Press JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli media on Sunday reported that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tried to negotiate a deal for more positive coverage by a major Israeli newspaper two years ago.

Netanyahu has been questioned by police twice about allegations that he improperly accepted lavish gifts from high-profile figures in international business and Hollywood. Local media have reported that a second affair involves Netanyahu being taped negotiating mutual benefits with a high-powered media mogul.

Channel 2 TV reported that police have a copy of a recording made by Ari Harrow, Netanyahu’s former chief of staff, of a 2014 conversation the prime minister held with Arnon Mozes, publisher of the Yediot Ahronot newspaper. It said they discussed trading positive coverage of Netanyahu in exchange for diminishing the impact of a free competing paper, the pro-Netanyahu daily Israel Hayom. The proposal never materialized, media reported.

Additionally, Channel 10 TV reported that Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan supplied the prime minister with a steady flow of expensive cigars, champagne and gourmet meals.

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