Avi Gabbay
Avi Gabbay Miriam Alster/FLASH90

Embattled Zionist Union MK Eitan Broshi says he will sue party leader Avi Gabbay for suspending him from the faction after sexual harassment allegations surfaced.

According to a Channel 10 report on Sunday, Broshi grabbed a woman in an elevator in 2006 when he led the Jezreel Valley Regional Council. The woman said Broshi had sexually assaulted her while they were in an elevator together and refused to let her leave after she rejected his advances.

“All the while, he kept asking me what my problem was and why I wasn’t into it, why was I making a big deal out of it,” she said. “I managed to get out of the elevator and escape by the skin of my teeth after I pushed him several times.”

Following the expose, Zionist Union leader Avi Gabbay announced that he had suspended Broshi, who he said was a "sex offender".

"I spoke with MK Broshi this evening and told him that he was suspended immediately from party activity, and demanded that he take responsibility for his shameful actions and withdraw from the Knesset. Sexual offenders have no place in the Knesset or the street," tweeted Gabbay.

Following the tweet, Broshi demanded that Gabbay apologize and retract the suspension and threatened legal action should he fail. According to Broshi, Gabbay does not possess the authority to suspend him from parliamentary activity and gave him until Monday evening to act.

"You are required to immediately publish a notice, also via the Twitter application, in which you will immediately retract the suspension notice and apologize to my client for hasty and reckless action, which was done without authority, " wrote Broshi's attorney Ilan Bombach.

"If you do not do so until 21:00 today, my client will be forced to take legal action against you in the party institutions, beyond the damage you have already caused to him in your actions and words"

Gabbay has denied the sexual harassment allegations and claimed that Sunday's report was a political hit piece. "It is strange that a claim has been made about an alleged act 15 years ago. As a politician, Broshi naturally acquires opponents, and therefore the timing is not coincidental, and we intend to file a libel suit against its perpetrators," Bombach wrote following the allegations.

Broshi also rebuffed calls for him to resign his Knesset seat and said that the report was fabricated on Monday. "I have no intention of resigning, I did not do anything," Broshi said.

The allegations follow a recent controversy surrounding Broshi after he grabbed MK Ayelet Nahmias-Verbin's rear during a party tour of a Gaza border town in early July. Party members informed Labor Chairman Avi Gabbay of the incident, and Broshi was asked to apologize.