Israeli PM to Step Down in 2 Months

Olmert's move may threaten peace effort, national stability
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 30, 2008 1:02 PM CDT
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert attends a meeting of his Kadima party at the Knesset, Israel's parliament in Jerusalem, Monday, July 28, 2008.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced today he will resign in September, throwing his country into political turmoil and raising doubts about progress for US-backed Mideast peace efforts. Olmert's brief address included harsh criticism of police investigations of corruption allegations against him. He said he was choosing the public good over his personal justice, the AP reports.

He has denied wrongdoing but pledged to resign if indicted. Olmert said he would not run in his party's primary election, set for Sept. 17, and would step down afterward "in order to allow the chairman to be elected and form a different government quickly and efficiently." His decision not to run in the Kadima Party primary sets in motion a process to choose a new prime minister.