March 27, 2018 / 7:32 PM / 3 months ago

Israeli PM Netanyahu leaves hospital after tests

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu left hospital late Tuesday following tests after suffering a high fever and a cough.

FILE PHOTO: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting, convened at the Dimona municipality building in southern Israel, March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun/File Photo

A Reuters witness saw Netanyahu’s convoy leaving the hospital, and shortly after midnight Netanyahu said on Twitter: “I am on my way home. Sure some rest and hot soup will put things right.”

“The prime minister has completed a series of tests and will be released home tonight,” a statement from Netanyahu’s office said earlier, adding: “The tests showed a mild viral illness in the upper respiratory tract.”

Netanyahu’s illness has come at a stressful time for the right-wing four-times prime minister, who is under police investigation for corruption in three different cases.

Netanyahu denies any wrongdoing.

Netanyahu, 68, fell ill in mid-March and cancelled his public schedule for five consecutive days.

FILE PHOTO: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister's office in Jerusalem, March 11, 2018. REUTERS/Oded Balilty/Pool/File Photo

A security cabinet meeting scheduled for Wednesday will take place as planned, an Israeli official told Reuters. Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman will fill in for Netanyahu if he is unable to attend.

On Monday Netanyahu, his wife and son were questioned by police as part of an investigation into one of the corruption cases in which the prime minister is a suspect.

In the two other cases police have already recommended that Netanyahu be charged with bribery. The final decision about whether to prosecute rests with the Israeli attorney general. That decision could be months away.

So far, partners in Netanyahu’s governing coalition have stood by him, saying they are awaiting the attorney general’s next moves. Political analysts say such support may erode if the investigations against Netanyahu intensify.

FILE PHOTO: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures as he addresses a health conference in Tel Aviv, Israel, March 27, 2018. REUTERS/Amir Cohen/File Photo

Surveys have shown that about half of Israelis believe the police over Netanyahu and think he should step down, while a third think he should remain in office. Support for Netanyahu’s Likud party remains strong in opinion polls.

Additional reporting by Eli Berlzon and Jeffrey Heller; writing by Maayan Lubell; Editing by Gareth Jones and James Dalgleish

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