Liberman calls to ban Balad, 'a branch of Hamas in the Knesset'

MK Ghattas says that "unlike IDF, Islamic State doesn't commit crimes against humanity," echoing Zoabi's statements.

Avigdor Liberman (photo credit: REUTERS)
Avigdor Liberman
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Balad is a terrorist organization that uses the Knesset to promote terrorism, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman wrote on Facebook Monday.
Liberman’s statement came a day after the MK Haneen Zoabi (Balad) compared the IDF and Islamic State, saying both were “both murderous armies that lack redlines,” and that an IAF pilot who pushes a button to bomb from the air is “no less a terrorist than those who take knives and cut off heads.”
According to the foreign minister, Balad has become a branch of Hamas that uses the Knesset to promote the terrorist organization’s needs and abuses its MKs’ parliamentary immunity.
“After the party’s previous leader, Azmi Bishara, fled the country [in 2007] because he was suspected of spying against Israel to help Hezbollah, Balad members continued and even worsened their activities against the state,” Liberman wrote. “It is enough to mention their [the party’s three MKs’] trip to the Hamas stronghold in Qatar during Operation Protective Edge [in August] and MK Zoabi’s incitement against IDF soldiers and when she said that the kidnapping and murder of three boys [in June] is not an act of terrorism.”
Liberman pointed out that the Central Elections Committee twice voted to disqualify Balad (before the 2003 and 2009 general elections), but the High Court of Justice overturned the decisions.
“We will renew our appeal to ban the terrorist party from running for the Knesset, because no one can ignore the blatant, inciting actions of Balad MKs against the State of Israel, which are clearly against the law,” he said.
“There is no room for a branch of Hamas in the Knesset,” the Yisrael Beytenu chairman concluded.
MK Basel Ghattas (Balad) defended Zoabi’s parallel between Islamic State and the IDF in an interview with Army Radio on Monday morning.
“ISIS is a murdering, cruel organization, but, unlike the IDF, it did not commit crimes against humanity,” Ghattas said.
Ghattas claimed that Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon admitted he bombed the Shejaia neighborhood in Gaza City to prevent a soldier from being kidnapped, and “that quote will bring Ya’alon before the prosecution in The Hague.”
The Balad lawmaker is Bishara’s cousin and has said he is in constant contact with the fugitive on the phone and online.