Hanin Zoabi
Hanin ZoabiDavid Vaknin/Flash 90

The Knesset Ethics Committee decided on Tuesday to “severely reprimand" MK Hanin Zoabi (Joint List).

The decision was made following a complaint filed against Zoabi by MK Oren Hazan (Likud), after she said during a speech in the Knesset plenum that civilians in Gaza were "murdered by soldiers."

"In this case, most of the members of the committee believed that the use of the expression 'murdered by the soldiers' was not worthy of the broad protection that the committee spreads over the freedom of political expression of MKs," said the decision which was presented to the Knesset.

At the same time, the committee took into account the fact that the remarks were made during a stormy discussion and therefore made do with imposing a severe reprimand on Zoabi.

Zoabi herself had filed a complaint following the discussion against Deputy Knesset Speaker MK Tali Ploskov (Kulanu), who presided over the discussion, on the grounds that Ploskov did not defend her while she was speaking.

Zoabi's complaint was not accepted after the Ethics Committee reached the conclusion that MK Ploskov’s conduct was not in violation of Knesset rules.

Zoabi is no stranger to controversy and is one of several among the Arab MKs who, despite being members of the Israeli parliament, regularly act against the interests of the state.

Zoabi has in the past said she views sovereign Israeli territory as “occupied” Palestinian territory.

She was previously reprimanded by the Ethics Committee in 2016 for her inflammatory comments in a debate about the reconciliation deal with Turkey, during which she accused IDF soldiers of murder.