MK Aida Touma-Suleiman, a member of the Hadash faction of the Joint List party, on Wednesday accused Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu of “deliberate incitement” against the Arab MKs which, she claimed, has been increasing since the elections.
Touma-Suleiman made the comments in an interview with Hamas’s Palestine newspaper, after three MKs from her party were suspended by the Knesset Ethics Committee for meeting families of terrorists.
"Since the government began its term in office, it has been enacting laws which clearly deteriorate the situation towards fascism...Netanyahu since his last term in office has been trying to get us out of the political game," she charged.
MK Touma-Suleiman added, "There is a very difficult racist atmosphere in Israel that gives legitimacy to all the measures being adopted by the Netanyahu government."
The Ethics Committee ruled this week that MKs Hanin Zoabi and Basel Ghattas would be suspended for a period of four months, while MK Jamal Zahalka would suspended for two months. All three are members of the Joint List's Balad faction.
The three Knesset members will be barred from attending the Knesset plenum until the end of the winter session, but will still be able to vote there and in committee meetings.
In the meeting last week, the three Arab MKs comforted the families of the terrorists, who they called "bereaved families," and promised to return the bodies of the terrorists, who they termed "martyrs".
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu attacked the three MKs from the Knesset platform before the decision to suspend them, stressing Israel's parliament would not stand for their controversial actions.
The Joint List condemned the decision to suspend the three, saying in a statement, "The three MKs paid a political price over of a moral, humane, national and political decision." The party emphasized that "the vindictive punishment will not deter us from continuing our struggle against fascism and racist policies."