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Police Recommend Investigation Against Zoabi

Police recommend that MK Hanin Zoabi be investigated over comments justifying the kidnapping of three students.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 6/23/2014, 4:13 AM

Hanin Zoabi
Hanin Zoabi
Flash 90

The Israel Police on Sunday night recommended that an investigation be launched against MK Hanin Zoabi (Balad) over her comments justifying the kidnapping of three yeshiva students by Hamas.

The recommendation has been forwarded to Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein and State Prosecutor Shai Nitzan, who will decide whether to go forward with an investigation.

Zoabi invoked outrage last week when she declared in a radio interview that the kidnappers responsible for the abduction of three teenage yeshiva students are "not terrorists".

"They are not terrorists, I do not agree with you! They have seen no other way to change their reality and they have to resort to these measures until Israel sobers up a bit and feels the suffering of others,” she declared.

The comments resulted in a wide array of condemnations from MKs from across the political spectrum, including MK Dov Henin of the far-left Communist Hadash party, who said that there are times that it is best to remain quiet and not speak out.

Culture Minister Limor Livnat (Likud) had said she would turn to Weinstein demanding an investigation into Zoabi’s remarks, while Tourism Minister Uzi Landau of Yisrael Beytenu denounced Zoabi as “an ambassador of terrorism.”

On Sunday, Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein responded to the many calls to dismiss Zoabi, saying he has no way to do so.

“You must all understand that as Knesset Speaker, I do not have the tools for dismissing a Knesset Member over his words or actions, severe as they may be,” Edelstein wrote on Facebook.

"The struggle against MK Zoabi and similar cases is mostly conducted through public campaigns, and among other things – by creating a solid wall between her and her likes, and the general Arab sector in Israel,” he added.