The Knesset's Ethics Committee on Wednesday decided not to punish MK Ahmed Tibi (Hadash-Ta'al) and instead opted to only warn him not to get into confrontations with police officers while exploiting his immunity as a member of the Knesset.
A complaint was filed to the Ethics Committee after Tibi confronted police officers and “rescued” from them a young Arab man who was detained for questioning for disorderly conduct in a neighborhood in northern Jerusalem, where the coffin of slain Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Aqleh was brought last May.
In response to the complaint, Tibi claimed that he did not try to "snatch the suspect from the police officers", but rather used his parliamentary immunity in order to "protect a citizen from the attack by the police officers". Tibi also claimed before the Ethics Committee that the officers had apprehended the suspect a minute or two after the incident, and also that the suspect was released from custody the next day with a cast on his hand due to an injury caused by the beatings of the police officers.
The members of the committee stated in their letter to MK Tibi that in view of the fact that the incident lasted only a few moments, "You did not completely cross the line in way that would determine that your actions amounted to an ethical violation."
"Nonetheless, the committee urges you to be careful not to once again enter into such conflicts with the police forces. As a member of the Knesset, you must respect your status and the status of other officials in the public service, and not take advantage of your status for such conflicts," the Ethics Committee wrote.
MK Tibi's office stated, "We respect the members of the Ethics Committee and its chairman and we will study the decision."
Tibi is notorious for his controversial actions and statements against Israel, despite being an elected member of its parliament. In the past, he encouraged Arabs to disobey the “Muezzin Law” which would limit the use of loudspeakers during the call to prayer in mosques.
He has also praised the Palestinian Authority’s “martyrs” at a ceremony held on the occasion of "Palestinian Martyrs Day” and sponsored by Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas.
Tibi once described Yisrael Beytenu chairman Avigdor Liberman as a “Jewish ISIS”, after Liberman advocated for “cutting of the heads” of Arabs who were not loyal to Israel.