Lindenstrauss to probe claims Balad used state funds against Israel

In a joint meeting of the Knesset's State Control Committee and the Knesset's House Committee on Wednesday, State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss agreed to look into claims that the Balad movement used state funds for anti-Israel activities. Balad will be investigated in the framework of a probe into all the political parties' use of state funds, Lindenstrauss said. "Democracy mustn't be exploited to enable activities that aim to harm the state," Kadima MK Yoel Hasson, chairman of the State Control Committee said at the meeting. Likud MK Yariv Levine, who chairs the House Committee, said "there is a feeling that Hizbullah spies are working in the Knesset." Hasson initiated the move to discuss the state's funding of the Balad Party after a Tira resident was indicted for allegedly being recruited by Hizbullah in the summer of 2008 when he traveled to Morocco to attend a Balad Party summer camp. The Israeli-Arab was allegedly recruited in order to collect intelligence on IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi ahead of plans to assassinate him to avenge the death of Hizbullah's military leader Imad Mughniyeh.