Despite Russia’s denial of any involvement in the upcoming Israeli elections, with a senior Moscow official saying that people should not read the Israeli media, intelligence sources in Tel Aviv announced there were several indications for such intervention, adding that Israel’s cyber army fended off several attacks. Director of the Shin Bet domestic security service Nadav Argaman discussed the issue, saying security forces were concerned about foreign interference that could affect the Knesset elections’ outcome. Speaking at a Friends of Tel Aviv University conference, Argaman said that a foreign country intended to launch cyber attacks in order to influence Israel’s general elections. The issue is considered an internal matter, however, several journalists attending the conference reported the news, which prompted the military censorship to issue an order banning the publication of Argaman’s statement. The military gag was later lifted when reporters threatened of filing a lawsuit, though the naming of the country in question is still prohibited.
“I don’t know in favor of whom or against whom the foreign country will interfere. At this point, I cannot say which political interest plays a role here, however, a foreign country will attempt to meddle in the April elections and I know what I’m talking about,” the Shin Bet director said.
However, head of left-wing Meretz party, Tamar Zandberg, demanded security services make sure that Putin doesn’t “steal the elections for his friend, the tyrant Bibi,” using the nickname of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
In her statement, Zandberg was referring to the close ties between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Netanyahu.