Israel Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Saturday that accusations revealed in a broadening corruption investigation that he stole thousands of dollars from charities are "distorted" and "despicable."
Police said on Friday that they had widened an investigation against Olmert. They said Olmert was suspected before he became prime minister of asking several charities and institutions to pay for the same trips abroad. Olmert pocketed the surplus, and used it for family trips abroad, according to the accusations.
The new allegations "break a norm of what should be appropriate in a democratic regime," Olmert told reporters on his plane as he departed for a summit of Mediterranean countries in Paris. "I was shocked by these distorted reports."
Olmert said he felt personally affronted because he had worked so hard for the organizations named in the accusations, which included the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial and the Nazi watchdog Simon Wiesenthal Center.