Baruch Marzel .
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Facebook removed the far-right Otzma Yehudit Party’s page from its network on Wednesday.
The party plans to petition against the move to the Central Elections Committee. Facebook did not provide either a reason for doing so or a warning before shutting down the page, according to the Otzma spokesman. The party is led by extremist activists Itamar Ben-Gvir, Baruch Marzel, campaign chairman Benzi Gopstein and former MK Michael Ben-Ari. The latter three are former students of the late Rabbi Meir Kahane, who was banned from running for the Knesset on the grounds of racist incitement.
Facebook has removed the page of Lehava, the anti-miscegenation (intermarriage) organization led by Gopstein, who subsequently sued the social media giant. Sources in the party said that Gopstein’s leadership of Otzma may have been a reason for the page’s removal. Marzel and Ben-Ari’s pages have also been taken down in the past.
Ben-Gvir said that, “while Facebook allows terrorists to incite to murder Jews freely, it silences and tramples the freedom of expression of a Zionist party that is running in the elections for the Knesset.” According to Ben-Gvir, this is a “blatant interference… trying to sway the results of the elections.”
He expressed hope that Central Elections Committee chairman and Supreme Court Justice Hanan Melcer will order Facebook to allow the page to go up again.