Daily Israel Report

Likud Punishes Feiglin, Dismisses Him from Knesset Committee

MK Feiglin dismissed from the Knesset’s Education Committee, a punitive action due to his suspending his parliamentary activity.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 5/22/2013, 6:16 AM

MK Moshe Feiglin
MK Moshe Feiglin
Israel news photo: Flash 90

MK Moshe Feiglin (Likud) was dismissed on Tuesday from the Knesset’s Education Committee, a punitive action due to his recent decision to suspend his parliamentary activity.

Feiglin was informed of his removal from the Education Committee by the chairman of the Knesset’s House Committee, MK Tzachi Hanegbi (Likud). Feiglin decided to suspend his parliamentary activity after the Justice Ministry banned him from the Temple Mount, claiming his “behavior” was not in line with what was expected from a Knesset member.

Despite the Likud's decision to dismiss him from the committee, Feiglin emphasized that he does not regret his decision to suspend parliamentary activity in protest of the ban from the Temple Mount, which was taken by the highest echelons and was rumored to have been ordered by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu himself.

“The State of Israel’s sovereignty on the Temple Mount, which is in the heart of Jerusalem and the nation, is dearer to me than any other role,” he said.

"As long as the Prime Minister chooses to continue to succumb to the dictates of Waqf and does not allow me to exercise my right as a citizen and member of the Knesset to ascend the Temple Mount, I will continue to see myself as not obligated to coalition discipline,” added Feiglin.

"I will be more than happy to go back and cooperate for the benefit of the success of the coalition, of which I am a member, when the government of Israel respects the sovereignty of the Knesset. If there is no sovereignty, there is no real value to the Knesset," Feiglin said.

When Israel liberated the Temple Mount during the 1967 Six Day War, then Defense Minister Moshe Dayan decided to leave the Islamic Waqf in charge of the compound.

The Waqf, in return, has removed every sign of ancient Jewish presence at the Jewish holy site and has consistently destroyed Jewish antiquities on the Temple Mount in a direct violation of a ruling by the Supreme Court.

Israeli Police, in an attempt to appease the Waqf, discriminate against Jews by limiting the number of Jewish worshippers allowed on the site holiest to Judaism, the Temple Mount, at one time in order to prevent conflict with Muslim worshippers. They often close the Mount to Jews in response to Muslim incited riots.

The only connection Islam has to the site is the legend that Mohammed tied his horse to the Temple Mount wall, although that is not clearly stated, when he ascended to the heavens.

Jews are forbidden to pray or show outward signs of worship at the holy site due to fears that doing so would anger Muslims praying at the Al-Aqsa mosque.

MK Feiglin regularly visits the holy site, usually on the nineteenth of every Hebrew month, and has in the past been detained at the site for allegedly praying or bowing.