Deputy Transportation Minister Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) said Wednesday that Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) chief Yoram Cohen is not fit to carry on his post after he said Tuesday that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was not intentionally inciting terrorism.
According to sources at Tuesday's meeting of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Cohen said that Abbas and the Palestinian leadership had no interest in encouraging terrorism. He also warned against changing the status quo on the Temple Mount in response to recent violence, in order to avoid sparking a religious war.
In an Israel Radio interview, Hotevely addressed Cohen's opposition to the current status-quo allowing Knesset members to visit the Mount. She explained that the Palestinian escalation in violence originated long before MK's began visiting the Mount, and added that if Cohen is choosing to "justify the massacre of a 3-month-old-baby and address false plots against Jews," he should be removed from his post.
Hotovely emphasized that MK's will continue to make the pilgrimage to the Temple Mount as they wish.
In response to her words, Meretz MK Nitzan Horowitz claimed that Hotovely is causing further provocation instead of working to calm the escalations in violence, and called for her removal from office.