Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s eldest son Yair has apologised to Hindus after he faced flak from some Indians who found one of his tweets to be “quite offensive”.
On Sunday, the 29-year-old Yair, who is very active on social media and often defends his father’s policies, posted a picture of the Hindu goddess Durga, with the face of Liat Ben Ari, the prosecutor in his father’s corruption cases, superimposed over the goddess face. Her many arms were also raised giving the middle finger.
“I’ve tweeted a meme from a satirical page, criticising political figures in Israel. I didn’t realise the meme also portrayed an image connected to the majestic Hindu faith. As soon as I realised it from comments of our Indian friends, I have removed the tweet. I apologise,” Yair said in a tweet.
Attorney General Avichai Mandelbits face was superimposed over that of a tiger accompanying the goddess under a caption that said, “know your place, you despicable people”.
The Twitter users were split in their reaction over the post with some Indians harshly criticising him for the offensive tweet while others giving him the benefit of doubt and attributing it to general ignorance about the Hindu faith in the West. Yair, who has been at the centre of several controversies, was appreciated by some Israelis for “showing courage in apologising for his mistake”, but was also condemned in equal measure by others for “being irresponsible”.
Earlier this month, Yair issued an apology to journalist Dana Weiss for appearing to suggest the top news anchor had attained her position through sexual favours, according to a local media report. Prime Minister Netanyahu’s trial on charges of fraud, breach of trust and accepting bribes opened in May in a Jerusalem court. He has said that the allegations are baseless and that he is a victim of a wide-ranging conspiracy.