arab mks against lieberm.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
An argument erupted in the Knesset plenum Monday as Deputy Defense Minister Ephraim Sneh clashed with Arab MKs in a special session dedicated to the "Beit Hanun massacre."
As Sneh began outlining the IDF operation, in which a wrongly aimed artillery shell killed 19 Palestinians last week, MK Muhammad Barakei (Hadash) waved a photo of 2-year-old Ahmed Atmani, a child who was injured at Beit Hanun, at the plenum.
"Take a look at what your operation did; this is what the Israeli military occupation begets," yelled Barakei. Knesset regulations forbid MKs from presenting any item or document while speaking at the plenum.
Sneh responded to Barakei's outburst by telling the MK that, "there is a difference of cultures between us, since we apologize when our soldiers harm innocents, while the terrorists are proud of their actions against us."
MK Moshe Sharoni (Gil Pensioners Party) soon entered the fray, telling Barakei to "sit down and be quiet." A shouting match resulted, with the Arab and Meretz MKs on one side, and Sneh, Sharoni, and MK Uri Ariel (National Union-National Religious Party) on the other.
After spending several minutes trying to restore order, Knesset Speaker Dalia Itzik evicted Barakei from the plenum, and issued warnings to the other MKs.
The discussion on Beit Hanun had initially been presented to the Knesset as a no-confidence motion by the Arab parties. Itzik decided not to allow the motion, due to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's visit to the United States.